Weekend Snapshots

We packed a whole lot in to this wonderful weekend, so get ready for some photo overload in this week’s Weekend Snapshots!

Our weekend was spent in South Dakota with family starting with a little time in Brookings…

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I’ve been going to Nick’s since I was a little girl. It’s one of those old-fashioned diner places that serve hamburgers right at the counter and I just love taking our kids there now! Nick’s is a must if you visit Brookings!

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Another must in Brookings is the Children’s Museum of South Dakota! I’ll have a full post on the museum soon if you’re thinking of visiting, but we spent the afternoon there exploring, playing, and learning! It was a hit with all of the kids, ages one through nine!

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We capped off our time in Brookings with a visit to see my grandparents! I love that our kiddos are able to get to know their great-grandparents and spend time with them!

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We spent Saturday evening downtown Sioux Falls, starting at the beautiful Falls for which the city is named! The city has done such a lovely job making a beautiful park to surround the Falls. There were four couples having wedding pictures taken in the twenty minutes we were there!

If you live in or are visiting Sioux Falls, you have to check out Fiero Pizza in downtown Sioux Falls. This build-your-own pizza place is super fun and super delicious! Each pizza is around $9 and we had eight pizzas for the ten of us. The adults each had their own and some of the kids split pizzas with a little left over. We also had a dessert pizza to top it all off! Two thumbs up from everyone in our group! To add to the fun, the table tops are chalkboards, so the kids made some art before and after eating!

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Downtown Sioux Falls also has a fun sculpture walk. Beware the alligator!

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Sunday morning found us at one of my happy places – the tennis court! The Hubby and I played some mixed doubles with my parents and the boys hit around a little as well. The older two start up with tennis lessons again this week!

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The zoo is always a great choice with our guys, so we headed to the Great Plains Zoo for the afternoon. The petting zoo and giraffes were favorites, but the kids were pretty cute, too! That face by Double J is what happens when he’s crabby and I ask him to do a crazy face. that kid. And my niece is the cutest, agreed?!

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The whole reason for our weekend getaway, other than spending fun time with family, was to celebrate our twelfth wedding anniversary! We had the best date night to celebrate, having a fabulous dinner where we talked + talked, then seeing Avengers: Age of Ultron! There is no one I would rather spend time with and I love this man way more than when we said “I do” twelve years ago! He’s just the best. The end.

Whew! I’m tired just recapping our weekend, but it was a great one!

How was your weekend? What were the highlights?

I’m linking up with Erin at Her Heartland Soul for Weekend Snapshots!

 

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The Day We Became We & 11 Years Later

This post is part of the “Love is Everyday” campaign and contest with Personal Creations.

I’m not going to lie. As I’m typing this, I’m watching another sappy Hallmark Channel Valentine’s Day movie. I’m a sucker for a happily-ever-after story and they wrap theirs up quite nicely in two hours.

But I have to laugh because every single one of these movies ends right after the couple finally gets together. And in my experience, the happily-ever-after hasn’t even had a chance to develop at that point.

The Day We Became

I’ve been thinking about the day we became husband and wife over eleven and a half years ago. We were young, we were in love, we were all starry-eyed. It was an absolutely gorgeous day in every way: high in the low seventies, blue sky, perfectly deep pink gerbera daisies, bridesmaids in periwinkle, a sparkling tiara in my up-do, and my handsome man singing to me in his tux. The day we became Mr. and Mrs. was one of the happiest days of my life.

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Except that I think the days just get better and we are more of a WE now then we were on May 31, 2003.

Many marriages dissolve over the years because the couple “drifted apart.” We’ve worked hard to not let any drifting happen, but it wasn’t any sweeping romantic gestures that got us to where we are today.

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Eleven years of holding hands through uncertainty. Experiencing life and death together. Changing sheets and changing diapers. Moving from apartment to house to new city and onward. Watching movies and watching children grow and watching time fly by…together. Eleven years of growing stronger and closer together day by day.

I’ll go ahead with the cheesy line because it’s absolutely true: I love this man of mine more today than the day we got married. I am so thankful for the day he and I became we, but I’m infinitely more grateful for what our love looks like today.

The two-hour love stories we watch for entertainment are light-hearted and fun, but I will always take our eleven years of love unfolding with many more years to follow as my happily-ever-after.

The lovely “The Day We Became &” canvas pictured above is just one of the beautiful personalized gifts available from Personal Creations. I received ours as part of this campaign and we are thrilled with it! Take a look around for a special gift to celebrate you and your honey!

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6 Ways to Show Your Husband Respect {Guest Post}

Today we have a guest post from Darlene Schacht, also known as The Time-Warp Wife! I love her commitment to encouraging women in their marriages and she has a new book on that very topic! I can’t wait for you to read her words today AND enter the giveaway at the bottom!

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I like it when Michael shows how much he loves me by spending time with me, buying gifts of chocolate, or taking care of little things around the house. My husband has learned how to speak my love language and he does it so well.

In fact a few weeks ago he came home with a bouquet of chocolate bars. It was so sweet of him! I think he figures that they’ll last longer than flowers. Ha!

I love that man.

While Michael also deserves my love in return, time has shown me that he also needs something else–my respect.

He needs to know that there are qualities about him that I admire. He should be told that he’s doing a great job leading our family. And he deserves to know how much we appreciate the job he does outside of the home.

Those are a few of the ways that I can show him how much he’s respected.

There’s a popular mindset that tells us, “Respect needs to be earned.” In other words it’s conditional on someone’s behavior toward us.

The problem with that way of thinking is that the minute we show disrespect to someone, their admiration toward us naturally goes down. The more their admiration toward us goes down, the less we respect them. See the negative cycle there?

Dr. Emerson, author of “Love and Respect” writes,

Though we all need love and respect equally, the felt need differs during conflict. For example, when a woman feels unloved during conflict, her natural reaction is to respond disrespectfully. And when a husband feels disrespected during conflict, his reaction is to respond unlovingly. We call this the Crazy Cycle: “Without love a wife reacts without respect, and without respect a husband reacts without love.”

For most couples it doesn’t happen over night, but many get caught up in the cycle and find that over the years their love and respect for each other is chipping away.

Long before marriage counselors discovered a woman’s desire for love and a man’s need for respect, the Holy Spirit inspired these words:

However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. – Ephesians 5:33, NIV

It’s true that we might not respect every thing that a husband does or says, but we offer respect by showing him the things we admire about him and loving him with a humble heart.

Why do we do it?

Our respect isn’t for the purpose of stroking their ego, or gaining their love in return (that is nice however!). We do it to glorify God and reflect the relationship between Jesus and his church. That’s the reason that marriage exists the way that it does.

Husbands are to love their wives as Christ loved the church. We’re talking about an imperfect church that didn’t deserve the grace of God. The Bible tells us that God demonstrated His love toward us while we were yet sinners.

If husbands are called to show that kind of love, shouldn’t we be expected to offer grace in return?

When we love people from that point of grace, we reverse the negative cycle. We respect them for the men that they, and they admire that quality in us.

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In closing let’s look at 6 ways to show our husbands respect:

1. Allow him to lead – Colossians 3:18 tells us this, “Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.” Encourage him in his role as a husband and patiently allow him to lead.

2. Affirm him with words of encouragement and support – Tell him what a good job he’s doing. Be thankful for the sacrifices he makes. It’s easy to be a fault-finder, but those who seek to strengthen their marriage seek ways to build each other up.

3. Honor him in front of others – Whether he is in your presence or not, you can show respect to your husband by speaking kindly of him.

4. Pray for him – The best ways to respect your husband is to care for him spiritually. Bring him before the Lord daily asking that God will strengthen him, protect him, and guide him in wisdom.

5. Do your share – One thing I love about the Proverbs 31 woman is how she worked hard for her family. By taking care their home, she brought honor and respect to her husband.

6. Be content – It’s so much easier to complain about those things that we don’t have than to appreciate those that we have. But when we’re grateful for the things that we have, we offer respect to our husbands.

Maybe he doesn’t do everything that you wish he did, and maybe he can’t provide you with the things that you long for. But if you look around at the things that you do have, I suspect you’ll find much to be thankful for.

Darlene Schacht

www.timewarpwife.com

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How about that giveaway of Messy Beautiful Love?! I have THREE copies to give away! Just enter below!

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DarleneHRDarlene Schacht is the well-known Time Warp Wife whose purpose in ministry is to encourage wives to put God first in their lives. She inspires us to love our husbands and children, and to be good homemakers. In doing so, we bring glory to God. God has created each one of us with a purpose, which is first and foremost to glorify Him. When we live as Jesus lived in obedience to the Bible, we bring glory to God, bring peace to our home, and draw closer to our husbands in the process.

Darlene is an Evangelical Christian who has been married to her husband Michael for over twenty-five years. They have four children and two adorable pugs. Their lives are basically surrounded by three things: faith, family, and books.

Her newest book, {affiliate link} Messy Beautiful Love: Hope and Redemption for Real-Life Marriages (Thomas Nelson), delivers an incredible testimony of grace that offers hope for today’s marriages and a spark for rekindling love.

Visit Darlene’s website at: www.TimeWarpWife.com

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Personal Bests

I approached my last race weekend without a clear goal. After having run a sub-2:00 half marathon in the fall, I wanted to pace a friend for their own personal half goal, but that plan fell through and I was left running the half by myself and not really sure of my aim for this race.

The Hubby, on the other hand, had a very big goal in his marathon: to qualify for the Boston Marathon. As he would move up to the next age bracket in time for next year’s marathon, he needed to run a 3:10 marathon or less to qualify. This was just his second marathon, but he is the most dedicated, hard-working person I know, and it didn’t seem crazy to me at all that he would shoot to take 45+ minutes off his previous marathon time.

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We chose to race in Fargo again because we love the flat course and the friendly people. And the weather that day added to the reasons we love Fargo – 45 degrees and no wind at the start. A runner’s dream weather.

Because of that weather, great crowds, and a healthy body, I decided to make another sub-2:00 half my goal for the day.

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It was hard, but it was fun. It was all about me and Jesus. I was constantly praying and calling on His strength to get me through. And He got me there in 1:58:43! A new PR for me by 50 seconds! And I remembered to look happy as I crossed the finish line! {see this post if you don’t know what I’m talking about}

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The best part about doing a half on the same day The Hubby does a full is I can be at the finish line when he comes through. Because of tracking, I could tell approximately where he was, and at the 20 mile update, I was worried. He was five minutes off where he wanted to be. I had no idea what he was thinking or how he was doing, so I just prayed – for God to give him strength and for him to know this race was a success no matter his finishing time.

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I get super emotional at races, so when I saw him come around the corner with just a few hundred feet to go, I started crying and yelling a whole lot to cheer him on. And that’s when I saw the best sight: he was smiling. A HUGE smile. With arms flexed, he crossed the finish line after running 26.2 miles in 3:19:22. AMAZING. 36 minutes faster than his previous marathon. 36 MINUTES.

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I couldn’t have been more proud and he felt the same. I think I was even more proud of him than I would have been if he had qualified for Boston that day because he trusted God + his training and listened to his body and did the very best he could do in those given moments. What could have been a great big disappointment was an overwhelming success for him because he had set more than one goal for the day, and he met two of those three goals – a new PR and breaking 3:20. He’ll have another shot at Boston. I just know it. But he wouldn’t have another shot at enjoying the accomplishment of that race on that day. I love how he latched on to the achieved goals and floated through the rest of the day on Cloud 9! I don’t think he stopped smiling for even a moment the rest of the weekend.

What did I take away from this day? Joy. A little stomach discomfort for the afternoon, but mostly lots of joy. An appreciation for setting several goals at different levels for one event, knowing some things just aren’t in our control. And the realization that we must always celebrate progress and personal bests.

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It is such a bonding experience for us to share this love of running. These race weekends away are fun, but knowing that your best friend in the world really gets what you love is just the best. And celebrating personal bests together is even better!

Congrats, honey! I am SO proud of all the hard work you poured in to this marathon and your freaking awesome finish time! You are my inspiration + hero! I love you!

 

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The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle Sale!

How does $698 worth of amazing ebooks on the topics of motherhood, homemaking, faith, marriage, homeschool, health + wellness, financial stewardship, pregnancy, holidays, self-care, working from home, and more for just $29.97 sound to you?!

And how about $200 worth of bonus products, memberships, and store credits FREE in addition to those 78 ebooks for just $29.97?

You are going to LOVE the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle Sale that starts today and you only have SIX DAYS to snag this fabulous deal!

The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle offers ebooks on some of my favorite topics from some of my very favorite authors!  Some of my favorites include:

  • The Warrior Weekend by Pat Schwenk: This fabulous ebook is a weekend retreat guide for fathers teaching their sons how to be Godly men. Included in the guide are stories, activities, and applications for real life – a great bonding experience for dads and their boys!
  • The Weekly Homeschool Planner by Jolanthe Erb AND The Simple Homeschool Planner by Tsh Oxenreider: I’ve used elements of both of these planners and think at least one of them will be exactly what you are looking for to plan your homeschool days, weeks, months, and the whole year!
  • 21 Days to a More Discipline Life by Crystal Paine: I LOVED going through this 21-day plan for leading a more disciplined life. Crystal makes the steps very doable but they also stretched me to think beyond my current haphazard plan towards a more organized, productive life!
  • Real Food on a Real Budget by Stephanie Langford: We are a household of always-hungry boys {and parents} trying to eat well and stay on budget, which can be hard with the cost of healthy food! Stephanie has great tips and suggestions for making healthy eating more affordable for any family!
  • Write Through the Bible by Trisha Gilkerson: The Gilkersons have a wonderful series of Write Through the Bible printables to help your children practice handwriting AND learn Scripture at the same time.
  • 76 Free Things to Do With Kids: A Real Mom’s Guide by Shannon Brown: Every mom loves free activities to do with their kids! This is a great resource to have going into the summer months!
  • Discipleship & Discipline: Practical Parenting Help for the Desperate Mom {ecourse} by Sally Clarkson and Sarah Mae: This course alone is worth the $29.97. The wisdom and grace these women share for moms is so inspiring and encouraging. Every mom should participate in this ecourse.


So how do you get these AMAZING books plus many, many more?!

First of all, this bundle is only available for SIX DAYS: 8am EST Wednesday, April 23 until midnight EST Monday, April 28. After those six days, you will not be able to purchase this particular bundle ever again!

The bundle is available in two formats: PDF only for $29.97 and PDF + Kindle for $39.97. To learn more about which bundle would be better for you and any other questions you might have, please visit the FAQ page!

Special deal just for Home with the Boys readers!

TODAY ONLY {4/23/14}, if you share this post about the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle on social media, you are entered in a giveaway for a free bundle – either to keep for yourself or give to a friend! To enter, just use the Rafflecopter below! Winner will be announced + emailed Thursday morning so everyone else will have time to purchase! If you decide to purchase today AND enter, I will refund the price of your bundle if you win OR you can give the free bundle to a friend!

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I hope you love this bundle as much as I do! Happy reading!

 

  • For any questions regarding the bundle, including how to download and read your ebooks, check this FAQ page.
  • For all of the fine print on this bundle, please visit here.
  • For more about the wonderful couples who put together these fun bundles, visit here!
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He Likes It When I’m Clingy

First things first…

HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S DAY!

Moving on…

Before The Hubby and I started dating, I was seeing the guy who live across the hall for a short time {I only ever dated three guys in my life. These two just happened to live on the same floor in college!}. When he broke up with me, The Hubby came to him the very next day to ask is he’d be cool with him asking me out.

My very-recent-ex was fine with this, but warned The Hubby that I was “clingy.”

“I like that about her,” said The Hubby.

I’m not sure when I first heard of this conversation, but at first I was offended. Clingy is not a good thing! But when The Hubby had a chance to explain, “clingy” to him meant a girl who enjoyed being with him and doing all kinds of things together and needed him, not in a desperate way, but in a “I don’t want to do this life with out you” kind of way.

We officially became a couple 14 years ago today in Dublin, Ireland while on a band trip to march in the Dublin St. Patrick’s Day Parade. And now, even 14 years later, I’ve noticed The Hubby still likes it when I’m “clingy.”

He likes to feel needed. He appreciates knowing he is missed while he’s at work. He feels important to me when I make spending dedicated time with him a priority. And he likes when I am physically “clingy” as well – holding hands, cuddling up, and the like.

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Sometimes I get in a groove of just doing things myself and forget we are a team. I don’t ask for help because I don’t want to burden him. This might work well for some marriages, but The Hubby loves helping me, especially with things he is more skilled at than I, i.e. organizing, planning, packing, fixing…I could go on! A day with the kids may have left me ready to curl up in a corner by myself, but he still loves it when I curl up with him, and when I remember to do that, it is even more lovely than when we would cuddle up for a movie 14 years ago.

Our dating anniversary today has me thinking back to all the things that drew us to each other in the first place. I reminded him this weekend of that day back in 2000 when I was first described as clingy. He said he still loves it, but it doesn’t happen often enough!

We may have 10+ years of marriage and 3 kids added to our couple resumé, but underneath all that, we’re still those two kids in love who couldn’t get enough of being together. And we still love so many of the same things about each other – they just often get forgotten in the busyness of raising a family! I’m recapturing that “clinginess” The Hubby loves so much and focusing on those things I’ve loved about him from day one as well!

 

What drew you to your spouse in the beginning? What drew them to you? Do you still value those things in each other?

 

Something neither of us had 14 years ago was a love for running! That photo above was taken this weekend when we both ran the Irishman – a 5 mile, 5K, and 1 mile race all in one day! The Hubby SMOKED it, finishing 15th overall with an average 6:40/mile pace {and he ran with a pulled muscle and a head cold}! Despite being slightly slower than last year overall, I set new PRs in the 5 mile and 1 mile this year! It was cold, windy, and there was even a little snow, but this race is always a fun challenge AND it’s all about the Irish, so I can’t help but love it! Anybody else run a St. Patty’s Day race this weekend?

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VITALITY in Marriage

We celebrated ten years of marriage last May. I still don’t have any expertise in the area of being a wife, but I do have ten years of experience, and this last year was one of the biggest years of revelation for me in this area.

I’m not writing a post full of marriage advice today, but a post full of my heart for where I want to grow as a wife this year. I loved The Hubby when we got married, but through three children and job changes and all the twists and turns of life, I didn’t imagine I could love him this much more. And I want to show him that love in the everyday, every day.

Vitality in Marriage

I’ve set goals and made resolutions about writing and motherhood and my time with God before, but I don’t know that I’ve ever really cast a vision for our marriage in this way. God gave me clear ways to add vitality and strength to our marriage this year:

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Be Present

The hours we are actually together just the two of us are very few. Those hours often get filled up with online time and distractions and then it’s time to sleep and we weren’t really THERE with each other. This is almost always on my end. I want to show him that I value our time together enough to put everything else away and BE PRESENT. Watching TV is one of our favorite things to do together, but I tend to multi-task during this time. This year, I want to treasure our time, even our moments watching TV as a couple, cuddling or talking instead of tweeting or working.

Flirt

Anyone want to give me lessons in this area? I’m kidding…mostly…but I really do want to be more intentional in flirting with my husband this year! It’s not that I don’t know what to do – I just need to act on it more! Flirting is fun and definitely adds spark to our marriage, so it is totally worth my attention in 2014! Plus, I think The Hubby is a hottie and he should hear that from me on a daily basis 🙂

Date Nights

Date nights take work and cost money, but I have never regretted a single date night we’ve taken. I just completely love spending time with The Hubby one-on-one away from everything else or even double dating with friends. In 2014, I want our date nights to be more frequent and I want to add some zest by trying new restaurants, doing more active dates, and just having fun being US. I put together a restaurant passport for our anniversary last year that lists lots of great restaurants in our area to try. I want to check off at least ten of those this year! Restaurant dates are our favorites because we love to eat and we love to talk for a long time after we eat!

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Look AT Him, Not THROUGH Him

So, this could be an entire post in itself as it was one of biggest marriage revelations since having kids. Like most of you, when my husband comes home from work, I am often working on dinner and trying to keep kids from injuring themselves or one another. I see him when he comes home. We might give each other a quick peck. But I am usually looking through him to what needs to happen next.

In life as a mom and homemaker, there are ALWAYS things that need to happen next. And in my multi-tasking, ENFP brain, I have troubling focusing on the right here, right now. Even with The Hubby right in front of me, right across the table from me, right next to me on the bed, I spend far too much time looking THROUGH him to the things that seem urgent at the moment.

The truly urgent thing is my need to really look AT my husband. To appreciate him, to hear him, to see his needs and wants and dreams. I started to make this shift in December and I found even more love in my heart for him. I found him even more attractive. I saw more areas where I could be his helpmate and partner. This is life-changing, marriage-changing stuff for me, friends.

I also ASKED The Hubby how I could be a better wife this year. His answer was so simple and perfect and totally not overwhelming. Have you asked your spouse this question? It’s a great place to start.

I spent a lot of time praying for The Hubby in 2013 and that will continue, and I look forward to seeing how God blesses our marriage with this vision He has given!

What does a marriage full of vitality look like for you?

 

Read more about my goals for vitality…

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What I Wore: Vegas Edition

Maybe you noticed things were a little quiet over here last weekend, but no worries – nothing’s wrong! We were just off celebrating our 10 year anniversary…

IN VEGAS!

Oh yes, we left the kids with Grandpa and Grandma and flew off to Las Vegas for four nights! We’re probably not your typical Vegas crowd – don’t drink, don’t gamble, in bed before midnight – but we went four years ago and discovered several reasons we liked going there to relax and reconnect.

  1. Flights and hotel are pretty cheap.
  2. We didn’t have to drive anywhere once we got there.
  3. It’s hot and we like to swim and lay by the pool – good combo.
  4. GREAT food.
  5. GREAT shows.

So we swam and ate and saw a Cirque du Soleil show and ate and went to a couple of movies and ate and worked out and had a fabulous time enjoying our time as a couple. I think these yearly getaways are one of the most important things we do for our marriage because we get to focus on only each other, act like we’re dating again, and remember why we love one another so much separate from the kiddos!

And I’d be lying if I didn’t say it was super fun to get dressed up everyday! So here’s my What I Wore Wednesday: Vegas Edition!

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The Hubby picked out this CUTE dress from GAP Outlet a couple months ago! Totally love it – the pattern, the color, the cut – so fun!

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This is how we spent much of our time in Vegas! I forgot a hat at home so I picked up this one at H&M on the Strip and snagged these fun sunglasses at Express! The hot guy is all mine 🙂

Vegas White Dress Collage

I picked up this white dress on clearance at Old Navy right before the trip! It was nice to wear white without worrying about the kids getting it dirty! I make enough messes on my own!

Vegas Bellagio Couple

Here we are at my favorite spot in Vegas – watching the Bellagio fountains! No, that’s not the Bellagio or the fountains in the background, but this is where we were viewing them and were able to grab someone to snap a picture of us that wasn’t a selfie! I got this black dress before our last Vegas trip for less than $10 on clearance at Kohl’s and it is still going strong!

Vegas Orange Dress

I think a little sparkle is a necessity in Vegas, even if I did wear this out to brunch! It may look fancy, but this clearance dress from Target was super comfy! And I just adored the color, especially with some fun gold jewelry and blingy flip flops! I think this whole outfit, including accessories, was from Target!

Now I’m thinking we might need a “What I ATE: Vegas Edition!”

Join the What I Wore fun at The Pleated Poppy today!

 

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Teach Them Diligently Convention Highlights!

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As far as retreats and conventions go, I’ve been sticking close to home so far this year, but that’s pretty easy when amazing stuff has been coming right to me! First it was the Jumping Tandem Retreat in April, and this past weekend it was the Teach Them Diligently Convention!

Teach Them Diligently is actually the first homeschool convention I’ve attended, but I felt like a lot of the messages presented would be beneficial to any Christian family!

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I made new “real life” friends with lovely ladies like Rachael Carman {above left} and Heidi St. John, surprisingly ran into dear friends like Traci {above right}, and got to hang out with some of my very favorite friends and homeschoolers from this area! And I finally met my MOB friends, Hal & Melanie Young from Raising Real Men, in person {below} and my friend Michelle from Apologia! So great to hug all of them!

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I missed a lot of the sessions because we were still on our tenth anniversary/second honeymoon trip {more on that fun tomorrow!}, but I wanted to share with you about the two main sessions I just loved!

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Friday night’s keynote speaker was Pam Tebow! She is such a sweet, graceful, faith-filled, inspiring woman! And I loved how she kept referring to her son – you know, the football player – as Timmy. So cute. Here are a few of my favorite quotes from her session:

What is learned in song is remembered long!

She was referencing teaching Scripture set to music to help the family memorize and I could not agree with this more! This is why we love Seeds Family Worship and The Rizers so much!

Let His Word have a profound effect on your children while they are in your home.

Don’t wait for someone else to teach it or try to explain it to them! Do it NOW while they are home with you!

Without God, we labor in vain. ABIDE in Him.

This parenting job is hard enough as it is, but doing it on “our own” is pretty much impossible. When we abide in Him, He brings forth fruit in every aspect of our lives, including our families!

We don’t have to be Super Moms or Super Dads because we have a Super God!

And THAT one is my favorite.

And Saturday afternoon I just HAD to hear Heidi St. John speak. She was speaking on the topic of marriage & romance for the homeschool mom/wife and I super-duper loved her message and perspective! Lots of laughs, too 🙂

A few quotes from Heidi that stuck with me:

Take Bible off of your curriculum list!

I know this is not related to marriage or romance at all, but this got a hearty AMEN from me. I don’t want to the boys to think “Bible” is just another thing to check off their school list!

The marriage is the priority relationship in the home. Nurture your children out of an overflow of your relationships with Jesus and your husband.

Jesus should be our first priority, but as far as human beings in your household, your spouse NEEDS to come first and the children need to know that as well!

Parallel living vs. Entwined living

Ooh, I loved Heidi’s picture of how couples can live in the same house but never meet because they are living two parallel lives, doing their separate things. Entwined living is what God intended for us as couples, purposefully coming together on a daily basis with Him at the center of it all!

The enemy knows if he can take out the marriage, he’s got a better shot at the kids.

I had never thought of this reason for Satan attacking Christian marriages, but it makes so much sense. Divorce leaves everyone in the family hurting and vulnerable. This is just one of the many reasons our marriages need to be a top priority.

I bought Heidi’s book, The Busy Homeschool Mom’s Guide to Romance: Nurturing Your Marriage Through the Homeschool Years, because I wanted to hear so much more of what she had to say on the subject!

Such good stuff from just those two sessions, right?! And that’s about .5% of the whole convention!

Leslie blog

I can’t thank David and Leslie Nunnery enough for putting on this amazing convention. I had some time to chat with Leslie Friday night and they are just the best of people. Their heart for encouraging and equipping families to carry out Deuteronomy 6 is so inspiring. They love Jesus and love people and are doing something about it!

Make sure you put Teach Them Diligently on your list for next year or head to one their nine marketplaces coming up throughout this summer!

Did you attend a Teach Them Diligently Convention this year? What was your favorite part?

 

The Ultimate Guide to Brain Breaks eBook

Praying God’s Word for Your Husband

We’re over a month into the new year and I’m curious…

Have you established any new good habits so far this year?

Research has shown that it takes about 21 days to establish a new habit, so assuming you’ve been working on something since around the first of January, you could have a new habit all set in stone by now!

I’m really excited about mine because it’s something I’ve wavered on back and forth for almost ten years now. I’ve prayed about being more consistent, but I haven’t really felt a long-standing success until now!

What is it?

Praying for my husband!

The Dreamy Hubby

Ahhh…isn’t he dreamy?! {Just give me a second…}

Ok, actually, it’s praying for him and the boys every morning. During my quiet time, I do my Bible study in my journal, and then I follow up that page with a handwritten page of prayers for all of my guys. I don’t know why this is clicking for me now, but it is one of my favorite parts of the day now!

I’ve had a renewed passion for praying for The Hubby specifically lately and a great resource has come my way from one of my favorite authors to fuel that passion even more!

Kathi Lipp, author of The Husband Project and The “What’s for Dinner?” Solution, has just released Praying God’s Word for Your Husband and I almost did cartwheels when it showed up at my door!

I’ve been praying God’s Word for our boys through Brooke’s Warrior Prayers book for a while now and was looking for something like it to pray through for my husband! This book is the answer!

Here’s why I really love it: Kathi encourages wives to pray BOLDLY from God’s Word for our husbands in a wide range of areas, but she also keeps the book fun and conversational in her signature style I have come to love! You’re going to read this book and feel encouraged and inspired!

I feel like I need to make this point today: The reason I feel passionate about praying for my husband is NOT because something is wrong with him. I mean, we’re all sinners, yes, but I’m not praying for The Hubby because he is a bad husband or going down the wrong path or anything! He is a FABULOUS husband and I can’t believe I’m so blessed to have been married to him for ten years this May!

Prayer is for the good times and the bad – can I get an amen on that? It’s just as important to pray protection and safety and blessing over our husbands during times of blessing as it is during times of suffering and hardship.

Kathi covers the good and the bad in Praying God’s Word for Your Husband: praying for his dreams and health, as well as praying for him when he is overcome with worry and feeling inadequate. Any wife will be blessed by the prayers Kathi offers up in this book!

Here is a favorite prayer of mine Kathi has written out in the book based on Deuteronomy 7:6….

Thank you, God, that my husband is set apart and made holy by you. Help me to look at him as you do. Help him to feel how special and treasured he is. As he goes about his day, I pray that you would shine your love into his life.

I know it’s not anything material you can physically give to your husband, but I can think of no greater Valentine’s gift for your husband this year… 

Praying God's Word for Your Husband

…than to get Praying God’s Word for Your Husband and start praying everyday for that man with whom God joined you on your wedding day!

What Bible verses are your favorite to pray over your husband?

 

*I received a review copy of this book. I was not compensated in any other way for this post, and all opinions are 100% my own. So are the happy hearts on the book photo 🙂

**This post contains affiliate links.

The Ultimate Guide to Brain Breaks eBook