Sprouting a Family

Saturday, February 8, 2014

My Improvement Plan

Goal:  Keep perspective.  I am a perfectionist ... And there are pros and cons to that.  I really need to work on keeping my perspective the way it should be.  I can reflect and grow and forgive myself at the same time.  I am an imperfect human who lives in a world of imperfect humans.  I need to love myself and treat myself like I would treat others.

Action plan:  Reflect, learn, grow, and carry on.  In imperfect circumstances, be the example I would want my children to follow...  Pray that God would help me in this area,

Goal:  Grow closer to God.  I used to read my Bible much more often than I read it now.  I would take notes during church.  I am ashamed to admit that in my busyness, I have not been doing either of these things like I should.  And you know what, if I did I bet my perspective would be a lot better (addendum to perspective action plan: READ GOD'S WORD) if I did.  I want to hear God speak to me through His word ... I need Him to help me live this life that I have been blessed with.

Action plan:  Read my Bible at least three times a week (daily would be best).  Take a notebook to church and take notes.  Pray that God will help me in this area.

Goal:  Rest.  I am tired.  I honestly am working as hard as I can work.  I don't even know how to rest anymore.  I always have my to do list running through my mind.  Being a full time worker, student, mom, and wife is hard.  The perfectionist side of me wants to give 100% to all of these areas ... But that's 400% and that's impossible ... But I try to force it to be possible ... And sometimes I feel like such a failure.  I think I am just burned out and I would be more able in all of these areas if I could just take a little bit of time to refresh and renew myself.  Rest stresses me out because I can literally feel my to do list growing.  Recently, my kindred spirit Arleney reminded me that God will help me carry my load.  I need to trust Him in this area (and in all areas).

Action Plan:  God created a day of rest for a reason.  Trust Him, imperfect Anna.  Rest, renew, refresh ... And you'll be much better equipped to take the week on!  Pray that God will help me in this area.

PS:  If anyone happens to stumble across this blog, know that I am very happy ... Just struggling a tiny bit at the current moment... :). By putting these steps into place, I hope to rekindle my flame.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Sprout says...

(The kids in Sprout's class are placing mystery items in paper bags.  Each child must describe his or her item to the class.  His or her classmates will then try to guess what the item is.)

Daddy:  Sprout, what are you going to say to describe what's in your bag?

Sprout:  I'm gonna say, "It's a pinecone."

Daddy:  Sprout, would you like to say the blessing?

(Sprout thanks God for the food with a John Wayne accent)

Sprout:  That makes Jesus happy.  He likes John Wayne, too.


Daddy:  Buddy, can you please go to sleep.  Daddy does not feel well today.  It's bedtime, please sleep.

(Sprout waits a minute and ponders)

Sprout:  That's not a very happy tone, Daddy.  Try again.


Daddy:  How was school, buddy?

Sprout:  I was a good man!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The sun came out

Dear Babies,

Today the sun came out!  We have had a very, very cold January this year.  It was so nice to get out and walk outside and feel the warmth of the sun on our skin.  All of us have colds right now, and honestly, I think breathing fresh country air did us all a world of good.

Bean, after our hiking adventure, you were quite a sleepy girl.  However, I wanted you to breathe clean, outside air as much as possible.  So you and I took a nap under a bright blue sky.  Chirping birds and the continuous pecking of a busy woodpecker lulled us both to sleep.

Sprout, you sure are the cutest little thing.  When you got back to the house, your pockets for full of treasures you found on your hike.  We need to make you your own special little box to house all the neat things you find and collect!

I am officially excited for spring.  I can't wait to dress you guys in shorts and t-shirts.  We'll spend as much time outside as possible.  We'll run and play and dig in the dirt and listen to Daddy play the banjo!  We'll teach Rocky how to roll over, we'll ride bikes, and we'll plant bright colored flowers.

I love you both very much!  Daddy and I loved spending this whole sunny day together as a family.

Love always,


Friday, January 31, 2014

Big smile

Do you see this adorable grin?  Can you believe that this little guy's heart is even bigger than his smile?!


Andrew snapped this picture last night.  I was singing little Bean to sleep.  She needed me and I needed her.


Dear Kids,

Sometimes it will feel like your world is out of control.  You'll feel as if you are doing everything in your power to get things checked off of your ever growing list that you've created ... and with each item you check, three more appear.  You'll feel nervous and scattered and maybe even a tiny bit scared.  In fact, in moments such as these, your focus may be so intense that it makes you narrow sighted and you fail to see all the wonderful things that surround you.  Should you find yourself in such a situation, take a step back and ...
  • Look at the big picture.  What things in your world are good and right?  Celebrate!  What things need to be changed?  Make a plan and put one foot in front of the other as you fix your problem one step at a time.
  •  Look around.  You have people that love you and will always be there to help you, should the need arise. Mr. Rogers once wrote, “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping,'" I think this is such great advice.  
  • Look up.  God never meant for us to carry our burdens alone.  Pray.  Ask Him to help you.  Thank Him for all of the blessings in your life -- for the ones you see and the ones that you don't even notice.  Exodus 14:14 reads,  The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still." Listen to Him and he will lay a path before you.
And just like that, things become clearer and your perspective will be based more on truth than on emotions.  Remember, even when things seem daunting, you are never ever alone.

Love always,


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Sorry it's been so long...

Dear Sprout and Bean,

Tonight I just wanted to write you a little letter.  I am so sorry that I have not written in a while.  Mommy has never been so busy in her whole life ... but that does not change the fact that Mommy loves you more than her whole life.  So, while you are asleep and before I fall asleep, I just want to write three things (out of the infinite number of things) that I love about the two of you.


1)  I love our special mama and son times.  For example,  I love that you twirl my hair when you are sleepy.  I love that your "snuggles and cuddles" and how you hug my neck as you close your long-lashed eyes.  I love that I can be such a source of comfort and security for you as finally fall asleep.

2)  I love your tender heart.  When your sister is sad, you do your very best to make her feel better (most of the time).  Whenever you hear a moving piece of music, your eyes tear up and your little lower lip quivers.  And when you tell someone you love them, you really do make her whole day.  And if that someone is ever sad, she thinks about a certain sweet little boy and she cannot help but feel completely blessed.

3)  I love that you want to learn about everything!  You want to know every species of animal and plant and dinosaur.  You want to learn how to play the fiddle, drive a tractor, and hunt a bear.  You want to sing in the choir like your daddy, build furniture like pawpaw, and cross stitch like mawmaw.  I hope you know that Mommy and Daddy are committed to helping you do all of those things! 


1)  I love that you are full of joy.  You dance to the music of katydids.  You sing (off key) at the very top of your little lungs.  You think that everyone is your very best friend -- and when you smile at them, they cannot help but want to be your very best friend!  Your laugh is just about the cutest thing Mommy and Daddy have ever heard ... and the wonderful thing about that is that you giggle all. of. the. time!  Can I tell you how wonderful it is for us to hear our very favorite noise over and over again!

2)  I love that you are a very strong and determined little girl.  You, my short little bald friend, do not know your limits.  You have exceeded all of your developmental milestones because you do not think you're too little to do anything.  You want to climb like a monkey, talk as fast as an auctioneer, and create beautiful pieces of art.  And if you fall, babble, or miss the paper with your crayon ... you do not get discouraged!  You delight in you attempts and you try over and over again.

3)  I love that you want to protect your brother.  If he should cry, you run to take care of him.  If he gets clumsy and falls, you run to his rescue.  You love that "brodor" with all your heart.  He is the first person you talk about when you wake up.  You want to do everything with that boy.  You want to be just like him ... and if he ever needs you, you are right there for him.

So goodnight, my sweet babies.  I have enjoyed writing this short letter to the two little ones whom I love so dearly.  May God bless you.  I can't wait to hold you when you wake in the morning.

Love always,