Friday, May 30, 2014

Stitch Fix May: My First Fix

I finally scheduled my first fix
By FINALLY, I mean that I first signed up last spring (almost a year ago. Procrastinators, unite.).
 I just kept putting it off because I didn't feel right committing to it in the midst of adoption fundraising.
And while we are still knee deep in fundraising, my sweet mama gifted me with a Stitch Fix gift card for Easter/Mother's Day (Insert squeals and jumps for joy here. Can you Say BEST GIFT EVER? I can.).

First, what is Stitch Fix
Well, if you aren't familiar with it, Stitch Fix is a site that pairs you with  your own personal stylist. 
You schedule a box to come to your door, insert your style likes and dislikes, and wait patiently (or not so patiently if you're like me) for your first five items to arrive at your door. 
There is a $20 styling fee, but if you keep even one item, that $20 is applied to your total.
Don't like anything? No problem. Just send all five items back in the prepaid envelope. 
Love it all? Keep it and take 25% off of your total. 

With that being said, I give you my first fix. 

Item #1: Pomelo brand Rowson Striped Shift Dress {$68}

I love everything about this dress. 
It's made so well and feels like something I'd get at the GAP or J. Crew. 
It fits like a dream-- seriously, if I could buy three more of this dress in different colors, I would. 
I am absolutely keeping this one. 

Item #2: 41Hawthorn brand Ivy Tulip Print Tab Sleeve Blouse {$68}

This is apparently a really popular Stitch Fix piece, seeing as how when you Google it it's everywhere. 
However, I can totally see why. 
This is actually the kind of top I was hoping I'd get in my first fix. 
Love the cut. 
Love how it's a little longer (a style I so prefer since having babies). 
The color is great, and this is my favorite sleeve length. 
I will say that this is more than I'd ever pay for this top in a store. 
Not that I think it's overpriced; I'd 100% expect to see that price in a boutique. 
I'm just more budgeted than this top would normally allow for. 
However, seeing as how I have credit, I'm keeping this one. 

Item #3: Pomelo brand Moni Stud Detailed 3/4 Sleeve Blouse {$58}

Isn't this one cute? 
Love the stud details. 
I can honestly say that this top felt really flattering on. 
I came THIS close to keeping it. 
However, once I stepped into the sun, Lee confirmed that it was a tad too sheer for my liking. 
It's nothing something I would have normally tried on, which is the joy of Stitch Fix. I LOVE the idea of trying on something NEW and different and a step out of my comfort zone. 

Item #4: THML brand Gloria Colorblock and Abstract Print Hi-Lo Tank {$48}

Love the hi-lo aspect of this one. 
Love the colors. 
Love the print. 
NOT a fan of sleeveless. 
This is going back, but I'm hoping to get something similar with sleeves in my next fix. 

Item #5: Kut from the Kloth brand Tivola Wide Leg Chambray Pants {$78}

Love these-- in theory. 
I'm always on the hunt for pants I love, seeing as how I'm super short,
 which tends to complicate shopping quite a bit. 
However, the draw string wasn't doing anything for me, the loose fit wasn't my favorite, and they were about two feet too long.  They were also a little pricey for my liking. The good news is, you review each item during checkout and can voice your opinion on price, fit, etc., so hopefully this problem will be avoided in the future.
Better luck next time. 


I love this concept. 
I love getting clothes sent to my home where I can try them on with the shoes, pants, etc. that I'd actually wear them with in the comfort of my bedroom without having to wrangle two kids amid terrible dressing room lighting. I'm not rushed and can really take my time to decide what I like and don't like. 
I love getting mail, especially mail that is as cute as this. 
I will MOST CERTAINLY do this again.
In fact, my next box is scheduled to arrive June 18. 

Wanna join in on the fun? 
I'd love to refer you. 
Simply follow this link to sign up. 
And let me know if you have any questions. 
I'll be watching the comments and will answer any questions there in case others have the same thoughts or concerns. 

And, just for the record, the photos in this post were all taken by Libby. 
I'll ignore talking about how awkward I felt and focus instead on what a good job she did as a nine year old photographer. 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Being a waiting adoptive mama is like being a preteen.

(that's 1:56 am, for the record)

I am waiting. 
It's not fun.
And I'm not very good at it. 

It's awkward, all the waiting. 
It makes me feel like I don't fit in-- I can't relate to the mamas who have their biological babies safely under the same roof, and I feel distanced from the adoptive mamas whose babies have already come home. 
Even among other waiting mamas, everyone's story is so different, and everyone is in such a different place in terms of when her baby will be the one to come home, that it leaves me feeling very alone a good bit of the time.

I eat more than I should, stay up way too late, and spend way more time than I should feeling sorry for myself. 

In other words, being an adoptive mama is a lot like being a preteen. 

I'm self conscious-- are people judging my words, actions, or how we spend our money while we wait?
What if I'm not good enough to be Emily's mother? 
What if she doesn't like me? 
And what will I do when I keep shoveling M&M's in my mouth like it's my job and then wake up one morning to find that my jeans don't fit? 

I know something better is coming, but for now I wait. 
And waiting isn't fun. 

I know that when this phase of life is over, I'll be different. 
There is no turning back. 
I'm changed forever by this process and by loving my daughter so very fiercely. 

Change is scary. 
Will I change for the better or the worse? 
Will I even make it through this?
Some days I'm just not sure. 

And some people-- well, they simply don't understand. 
They don't understand why I'd want to adopt or what about it makes it hard. 
I don't understand these people.

Someone the other day asked me if it was hard to wait for my daughter to come home. 
It was all I could do to bite my tongue and not tell her what I was really thinking. 
While I try hard to be honest, sometimes biting my tongue is just the easier, better option. 
This was one of those times. 

I feel so awkward, so out of place, and so alone in this journey. 
I don't know what to say or do or feel. 

My emotions are all over the map-- literally. 
I cry a lot, way more than I did before.

The good news? 
I survived puberty, and I'd like to think I'm a better person than I was before that process. 
A girl can learn a lot from having bad skin and even worse hair. 
I'm pretty sure I'll survive this too-- I just don't know that my skinny jeans will make it through to the end.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Life lately.

May has been a whirlwind. 

Here are some of the things that have been keeping me all kinds of busy lately:

1. Reading-- trying to catch up, trying to take in all the goodness, trying to learn as much as I can. A Summer reading list is coming soon. What are YOU reading this summer? 

2. Third grade-- it's over. We said goodbye and walked away. If you need me, I'll be crying in the corner. 

3. Jessica Honegger from Noonday Collection made her way to Mississippi earlier this month. We stuffed her face with pimento cheese, and she shared her world changing stories with my friends. It was so great spending time with someone who followed her dreams, beat the odds, and is working to change the lives of thousands of artisans around the world. She inspires me so so much, and visiting with her was nothing short of wonderful. 
4. Let's talk teachers' gifts. We kept it simple and sweet this year with succulents and Sonic cards.

5. Dance recital-- it's coming soon, as in next weekend. And it's consuming the lives of two little girls who live in my house.

6. In exactly fifty days, I'll be boarding a plane to Rwanda with my best friend. Oh my stars, I can't wait.

7. Sno Cones-- Summer is officially here. And we've welcomed it with open arms.

8. At the age of thirty-four, I think I have FINALLY mastered the curling wand. Ohmylanta, I feel like I deserve a prize or at least some burn cream for my poor fingers.

9. We are still collecting donations for our upcoming Instagram Auction to help bring Emily home. The deadline is May 29. If you'd like to donate a handmade item, simply send a picture and price to me at And mark your calendars for June 2-4.

What's been keeping YOU all kinds of busy these days? Do tell. 

Monday, May 19, 2014


There's dinner to cook, hair to wash, and dishes to scrub.
The dog needs a bath, the girls need to bathe, and heck-- I could use a shower myself.
Are the uniforms clean?
Did I remember to do the 9,987 things on my to-do list today?
When was the last time I talked to my mom?
There are e-mails to answer, texts to respond to, and calls to return.
There is adoption paperwork to complete, funds that need raising, and I have to get fingerprinted...again.

And don't even get me started on the end of the year-- I've literally had to ask Libby when her last day is....twice. I feel like I'm literally crawling over that finish line this year, forehead sweating, heart pounding, knees weak, and clutching my side in an attempt to catch my breath. That pretty much sums up how I'm feeling about the end of school (it's Thursday, by the way). I keep forgetting. It's like I have a mental block. In fact, if my planner is not in my hand, please don't ask me when anything is, because I can all but promise you that I won't remember.

 Teachers' gifts?
 Haven't bought 'em.
Something fun to celebrate the start of summer?
Haven't planned it.
I'm doing well to just dress myself and feed my kids these days, folks.

Some days are just like that- I wake up and go to bed feeling overwhelmed.
There are so many things I have to do, combined with all the things I want to do, combined with all the things I need to do-- basically there are just too many things to do.

If I've learned anything from the adoption process, I'd have to say it's perspective. Some things simply aren't worth my time and energy. When I say yes too many times and stretch myself too thin-- nothing good is going to come from that. Would I rather be the girl who can't say no or  the girl who picks her battles? Would I rather be the girl who does 100 things or the girl who does ten things well and still has some brain power left at the end of the day?

While I'll always be that girl who likes her plate fuller than most (yes, this can also apply to my literal plate-- the one typically filled with cookies), I am also the girl who is learning that life's a great balancing act. And part of being a good balancer (real word? I'm gonna say that it is.) is knowing when enough is enough. What things have to stay on my plate? What things would I really like to keep on my plate? And what do I simply need to let go of?

Overwhelmed? It's not my favorite way to feel. But you know what? There's always tomorrow-- and tomorrow is full of all things fresh and new and hopefully well-rested.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

That Daughter We Share

Dear Emily's Mother,

Thank you. Thank you for loving our little girl. Thank you for doing the best you could. I think of you every day, and I am overly aware of the fact that without you there is no her.

 I wish we could be friends. I wish I could hold your hand and comfort you. Although I know very little about your life, I do know that life is hard for everyone in Congo, especially the women. I wish I could know you-- your likes and dislikes, gifts and fears. I'd love to know about your family and about your life as a little girl. I'd love to know about when you were pregnant with Emily-- was she crazy active like Libby or totally mellow like Hollyn or somewhere in between? Were you alone when she was born? I so hope you weren't. I hope someone was with you-- taking care of you and encouraging and comforting you.

I hope she remembers you. I hope she has even one moment with you buried deep in her heart that she can hold onto forever. I hope she remembers how you smell and the sound of your voice. I pray she can see your smile when she closes her little brown eyes. Did she get her dimples from you? She has the most adorable dimples, and her smile stops me dead in my tracks. She is so very beautiful, that daughter we share.

Thank you for being brave. I can't imagine the kind of brave you must be. There have been many nights where I've cried for Emily-- missing her, longing for her, worrying about her. But I want you to know that there have been just as many nights when I have cried for you. I hope you are safe. I hope you are cared for. I hope you aren't alone. Most of all, I hope someone has told you about Jesus. I pray that you know Him and the peace that comes from a relationship with Him.

And more than anything else, I want you to know that I love our daughter, and I can only believe that you love her too. What a blessed little girl to have two mothers who each love her enough to do hard things for her. And oh, do I love her. No matter what happens, I will never, ever stop being grateful for the gift of being Emily's mother. And I will never stop being grateful for you.

Praying for you always,


Thursday, May 8, 2014

The Mom I Hope They See

Oh, my girls. 
How dearly I love them. 

I've been thinking a lot lately about my role as their mom. 
What kind of mom do I want to be? 
What are things I want them to remember about me? 
What do I hope they ingrain deep in their memories, and what do I hope they slowly forget? 

And while I'm still (and will forever be) a work in progress, here are some things I hope they see:

Serving others, meeting their needs, filling in the gaps. I hope they see me reaching out to help those in need both globally and locally. Listening, protecting, encouraging others-- being a good friend on a daily basis.  I hope they realize that this is important and have a desire to serve others even when it's not necessarily the easiest or most fun or most convenient thing they will ever do. 

I want to be the kind of mom who says the same things behind closed doors and out in the world. I hope they see me sticking to my convictions regardless of the circumstances. I hope they know that I mean what I say and say what I mean. 

We all fail sometimes. It's part of life. But, how we handle failure is what separates us. I hope my girls see me fail with humility and a good attitude. I hope they see me laugh at myself and try again. I hope they see me rely on Jesus when things get hard....which they will...often. 

I hope they leave our home one day knowing that time with Jesus is crucial. It doesn't just happen. We have to make it a priority and stick to it. We have to realize that it's a NEED, not just something nice we sometimes do. I want them to know that the nearer they draw to Him, the happier and more fulfilled they will be, regardless of the circumstances. 

Some things in life are worth fighting for. They are worth losing sleep for. They are worth crying over. They are worth hanging in there for even when things are anything but fun. I hope my girls can tell the difference between what is worth fighting for and what they should let go of. I hope they can say that I never gave up when it really mattered. 

There are so many things I don't do well. I get frustrated and mad, I'm terrible at waking up on time, and sometimes cereal for dinner is just the best I can do. BUT, I do fun well. And I hope they notice. 

What do YOU hope your kiddos see in you? 
Do tell. 

And I hope you're having a great week. 
It's been beautiful here lately-- Mississippi generally tends to struggle when it comes to the changing of the seasons, meaning we usually get about two good days of spring before we plunge face first into summer. I've been trying to make the most of it while it lasts. How are YOU gearing up for summer? Working on our summer bucket list and gearing up for all of the goodness that the end of the school year tends to bring with it. 

Happy Thursday to you and you and you!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Little Moments

Life is made of little moments.
Laundry and pancakes, 
impromptu tea parties and watching Frozen 457 times....
this is life. 

However, I'm the girl who lives for big moments. 
I am always looking for the next big thing to look forward to.
While there's technically nothing wrong with this, it sometimes scares me that I'm missing it. 

I'm an 'all in' kind of girl. 
And for the past year, my all has been given to our adoption. 
Again, waiting for the next big thing, with this big thing being especially important and oh so cute and currently in Africa waiting for her family. 

I don't want to miss out on the little moments. 
I don't want to waste my days waiting for the big moments. 
I want to make a conscious effort to enjoy the small things that make our home our home
 and our family our family. 

Some days I do okay with this. 
Other days I fail miserably....
because let's face it-- looking forward to loading the dishwasher and spending one more dinner forcing Hollyn to eat her three bites of broccoli simply doesn't have the same appeal as planning for a trip to Africa, dreaming about a visit to see my bestie, and preparing for a life with daughter #3. 

Any thoughts on this? 
How are you making it a point not to waste your little moments? 
Do tell.