Lemon Grass

I can’t keep ANY plant alive. I honestly don’t understand it. I can keep 4 tiny humans alive, but somehow I can’t seem to keep a plant alive for longer than a week. Until my lemon grass… my mother in law read that lemon grass helps keep mosquitoes away and bought us and herself some. We kept it in the little plastic pot it comes in for a few days. I didn’t want to go out and buy new pots if this thing was just going to die anyway. So a week passed and my lemon grass was still alive! I was so proud. So we went to Home Depot and bought some bigger pots for it. We even got some “miracle grow” and put the lemon grass in the new pots. The lemon grass has been on my front porch, alive, for a few weeks now! I felt like I had really accomplished something! Then it happened… I saw my mother in laws lemon grass. Her lemon grass was so thick and full! It was growing straight up with not a single droopy piece. What on earth!? Suddenly, my lemon grass didn’t look so good and I wondered if I should just let it die and start all over. Why do we do that? How is it that I could be proud of my lemon grass for weeks and then in a split second decide it’s terrible? That’s satan’s wheelhouse guys. He loves to place things that he knows we will compare to right in front of us. That mom on Instagram who has it all together, that house on Pinterest that’s perfectly decorated, that couple on Facebook who never fight (HA!), or even something as small as lemon grass to cause a little bit of doubt. We’ve got to have the tools to fight back. The Bible tells us in Galatians 6:4 NIV that “Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else,” And yet, in our flesh, we can’t help but compare. When you find yourself comparing to what others have, do, say, or look like ask God to guard your mind. Pray for God to help you focus on what you do have. Remembering that the person you’re comparing yourself to has compared themselves to others also. When our focus is on what others have, it can’t be focused on what we have. Contentment and envy can’t live together. 

Last night my mother in law came over and I was telling her I might blog about our lemon grass when she said “Your lemon grass is still green! Mine is brown now” and I couldn’t help but chuckle. Capture the temptation to compare today! Take pride in yourself. Push Satan and his joy stealing aside in Jesus name! And remember…. 

The (lemon) grass isn’t always greener on the other side. 😉


Dear Griffen.

Dear Griffen-

The day I’ve dreaded since you were born has finally come and gone. Kindergarten. I always said that Jesus was coming back before you started school because he had to know I couldn’t handle sending you! Turns out I was wrong. You’re gone. And you absolutely love it. Sending you to school brought on all kinds of emotions for me. You’re gone from our breakfast and lunch table five days a week. I don’t  hear you and your brothers laughing throughout the day anymore (or fighting 😉 ) You aren’t home to ride your bike after breakfast, or catch lizards after lunch. I’m now waking you up everyday instead of you getting to wake up on your own and come cuddle me. There are almost EIGHT hours of everyday that you spend outside of our house. Another adult is in charge of your well being from 7:50-3:15! Before sending you, my mommy heart couldn’t take all of these things. A sweet friend of mine told me to pray that you’d get the teacher you needed, and meet one good friend for the year. God is so faithful! Your teacher recently wrote me an email saying how great you were doing, and how she loved your tender heart. The fact that she knows about your tender heart just one week into school made me a little more at ease. You come home everyday talking about a new friend. The excitement in your eyes when you tell us something new you learned is such a blessing to experience. Here at home, Beckett is growing as a big brother too. He’s remembering all the things you did for him, and he’s doing them for his little brothers 🙂 So as much as I didn’t want kindergarten to come, i’ll admit that so far seeing you grow, learn, and share your light with other people isn’t half bad. I’m so proud to be your mommy! I love you, buddy. Keep shining!

Love, Your Mommy

To anyone out there who is struggling with any transition, find the joy. I did a bible study by Margaret Feinberg where she encouraged us to find “joy bombs” (which i’ve linked at the bottom of this page. It’s a great bible study, especially if you’re struggling to find your joy!) No matter your situation, look for 3 joy bombs throughout your day. For Griffen’s first day of kindergarten my joy bombs were a smooth drop off with no tears, seeing Beckett step up as a big brother, and 3:15 when I got to pick my baby boy up and hear about his day! We can always find joy if we aren’t looking for misery 🙂 Seeing how much Griffen loves kindergarten brings me joy more than anything else.

Train up a child in the way the he should go: and when he gets old, he will not depart from it.  Proverbs 22:6 KJV


Lifestyle session.

As promised, this post is our images from our lifestyle photo session with the fabulous Rachel Coney! If i’m being honest, I’m not always the greatest at doing photo shoots. It can be a lot of work when you have multiple children! I always tend to over analyze how I look, how my kids are acting, and what kind of mood my husband will be in during the shoot. Lifestyle session is a different story!  It took so much stress off of me because we were all in our lounge wear just hanging out. We didn’t have to be super posed or stress about what we would wear. In fact, we were all barefoot!

Here are some of my favorites in color…

And a few black and whites, because who doesn’t love a good black and white? 😉

I hope you’ve enjoyed these, and maybe even been inspired to gather up your family and do a lifestyle photo shoot! You won’t regret it 🙂

Until next time! XOXO

Welcoming baby Lincoln!

Our Lincoln Hays is here! We woke up the morning of August 1st and headed to the hospital for our planned induction! I must say, a planned induction was pretty nice! When we got to the hospital they already had our room ready, and our nurse came in and started asking all her necessary questions. After SEVEN tries for an IV, we finally got one. (For some reason i’m always a hard patient to get an IV on, so we halfway expected a little trouble) They drew blood, ran labs, and ordered my antibiotics. Around 9:30 in the morning, my OB came by to check on me. I was already at a 4 cm and she said it was time to break my water. Right after she broke my water I told them I was ready for an epidural. I wasn’t feeling too much pain yet, and wasn’t really interested in changing that. 😉 Not too much longer the CRNA showed up to start the epidural. Zack actually got to stay in the room and watch the process. (I made sure to tell him he wasn’t allowed to make any comments regarding needle size, say phrases like oh my goodness, or ask any questions until the epidural was complete ) The epidural took a little longer to work than they were expecting, and I had to lay flat on my back for what seemed like forever. Have you ever laid flat on your back while 9 months pregnant? Ouch. But it finally started working! Not long after it started working, I started itching everywhere. The CRNA (who was very attentive and prompt) came in and switched the kind of medicine which solved the problem! Around 1:45pm I asked the nurse to check me. I was starting to feel a little more pressure and thought maybe it was go time. She checked and I was a 7cm. Darn! At 2:00pm my OB came back and asked how everything was. I told her I really thought it was time to push, but that the nurse had just checked me. She asked if I wanted her to check me again and I said yes. She did, and said it was definitely go time! She went and got the nurses and they started breaking down the bed and getting everything they needed out. At 2:21pm our precious baby boy was born! The hospital I delivered at has started a new thing, and immediately put him on my chest for 1 hour of skin to skin. So we let everyone know he was born, but didn’t have any stats on him yet and no one was allowed back in the room until the hour was up. After the hour, they weighed him, cleaned him up a little (although they’ve now also decided that a bath before they’re 6 hours old is a bad idea apparently) gave him his shots, did his footprints, and gave him back to us. It was finally time for all my babies to meet! My sister in law came in to take pictures of everyone’s reactions. Some were more thrilled than others 😉

Mommy and Lincoln

Daddy introducing Collier and Griffen to Lincoln. They immediately loved him and wanted to hold him.

Our poor Beckett didn’t understand at first… he said he didn’t want another baby and acted like his life was over. Life is hard when you’re 3 and your nap didn’t happen because mommy was in labor. Haha! (To all mommy’s worried about how their current children will react to their future children, stop worrying! Children adapt. Beckett now loves his brother and probably already doesn’t remember life before him. 😉 )

Beckett starting to come around, and Collier trying desperately to get Lincoln to open his eyes! He kept saying “Like this baby Lincoln” and opening and closing his own eyes.

Next up were the grandparents! (and not pictured, my sister in law… who is always behind the camera. We love you Rachel!)

Our very first family photo. (Which we had to give out gum in order to get them to smile for. Whatever works people, whatever works)

We had a great rest of the day. We got moved into our overnight room, had great nurses, doctors and caregivers (including Zack’s cousin who we were lucky enough to have as our nurse for the day after delivery) and got to go home after a 24 hour stay!

I can’t wait to share our lifestyle newborn pictures with you! Stay tuned and subscribe so that you’ll be up to date on when I post 🙂

As always, thanks for reading!