Oh dear Avett.  What do I do with you and what would I do with out you? 

You are a mess. An absolute stinker. A conundrum of some sort.  Do you know what you want? Because I don't.  Nearly 20 months together and you keep me on my toes every. blessed. day.

You are entering what i like to call: the parrot stage. You are mimicking phrases and sounds all of the time.  This week Evaleigh said "daughter" and you followed right along and said the same.  Yesterday I was trying to teach Evaleigh how to say a clear "v" on veil instead of "bail" as it was coming out.  

"V...v...v...veil." I would say and you would trail right along behind like my little echo. 

Your all time favorite word right now other than obviously "no", is "whyyyyy".  I think you've been absorbing your sisters form of communication a little too much. 

If we ask you to come inside you say, "why?" If we tell you to sit down you say, "why?"   It's much too much sass for any 20 month old.  Either you have great timing or really you do understand what we are saying.

Tonight on our family trip to Target to buy diapers your dad and I just got right in your face and started saying "why" over and over to you.  You just grinned slyly and looked away to the side.  You know you are a mess and you get away with it.

You say "uh oh" as loud as you can and then throw whatever you can on the ground.  You got it all backwards.

You. Climb. On. Everything.

You want nothing more than to sit in the refrigerator and pull out yogurts to hand me.  

You enjoy hitting me and then when i tell you, "be gentle to your mommy." You run my face ever so softly.

You sleep with lavender diffused in your room every night and you love to sniff it before going to sleep. You scrunch up your nose and it's the cutest.

We love each other a lot. A lot.

im a wedding girl too

Yesterday Evaleigh was so excited to see me in my wedding dress. I hope she always remembers the excitement of our anniversary every year.  I could see her little wheels turning in her mind with wide eyes of adoration and awe as I glided around the house in my wedding dress.  She asked me over and over to spin in the living room and each time she would squeal with delight.  It's the kind of moment where you can feel, almost tangibly, that a memory is being made.

She asked right away to put on her wedding dress after I tried my dress on early that morning to see how I would get in it, if at all! Last year it zipped up no problem, this year I had a few more Ben&Jerry pounds to answer for. So a cardigan thrown over the back would just have to do.

We spent the morning making flower crowns and she slipped in to her white dress, Cinderella plastic slippers from her Grammy, her blonde hair weave of course, and her flower crown.

She looked in the mirror and exclaimed, "I'm beautiful!" And she was. And is.

The whole day she paraded around saying that she was going to get married.  She went inside her teepee and said it was the temple. That warmed my heart. 

I hope she remembers how special yesterday was for all of us.  How glad I am to have such a full and lovely life with these people. 

I love John Murphy, Evaleigh Joy, & Avett Mills.

Still basking

Yesterday really was fantastic.  

John came home after school with lilies in hand and an anniversary gift. He said, "I've written you a poem. Do you want to read it or do you want me to read it for you?"  Of course I opted for him to read it.  "It's meant to be funny but It also might make you cry."  He sure knows me, I cry a lot and this was no exception. 

"Of the 5 years we've complied.
There are two things which make me smile.
1st being the children you've baked.
2nd of course the music we make.
So, here's to 60 more together.
Full of songs that last beyond forever."

I looked at him with tear brimmed eyes and lept up to wrap my arms around him.  "I love it!!" Then he handed me a leather sketchbook and a beautiful pen for us to write our songs in.

Since yesterday I've already written one song and I can't wait to fill it up with more.


f i v e

To five years with my squints.

Life with you is simply more than I ever imagined marriage could be.  You came in to my life as such a surprise a little more than five years ago.  I had plans to leave for a mission and you had plans to go off to Utah for school.  Our paths collided in Georgia and within a matter of weeks we changed everything to be together.  Dating you was electrifying and comfortable all at the same time.  I'll never forget the moment I was riding in Laura Bain's car and you were in Colorado for Christmas and I finally said it out loud, "I think I'm going to marry John Murphy."  

On January 3rd you put a guitar string ring on my finger and asked me to be your wife.  I remember hopping back in the car after you asked my fathers permission and both of us squealing at the tops of our lungs saying how exciting and fun life ahead of us was going to be.  

 I was never more certain of anything and choosing to put my life with yours has been the easiest and best decision I ever made and we've both never looked back.

Thank you for being an excellent communicator, an easy going man, a wonderful listener, an enthusiast for learning, a committed student, an intriguing conversationalist, an everyday comedian, the ultimate tickler wrestler and massager, a spiritual leader, an eclectic and classic music maker, a tender hearted observer, an engaging friend, an exceptional father, a determined provider, and an incredibly sexy husband. And oh so much more...

5 years, 4 moves, 2 babies. Let's just keep on going ok? I love you endlessly.

Love, wife of your life aka freckles

(thank you for keeping our annual wedding clothes anniversary tradition alive)

And a BIG thank you to Whitney Gossling Photography for these shots.

5 years

Last night John Murphy and I celebrated 5 years of marriage over a delicious dinner and a stroll around the bookstore. We went to look for a cookbook I've been pining for for over a year.  When it wasn't there we looked online and found it for $7.99 down from $27.99.  An anniversary miracle I tell you! Dinner was so lovely. We had the best stuffed peppadew peppers with a balsamic glaze that were out of this world. We spent 5 minutes dissecting them and figuring out how we could make them ourselves.

We shared some really exciting conversation that I am so excited about and I can't wait to make good on the things we talked about! 

I love this life we've created together and there is still so so so much in store.  I can't wait to do every single bit of it with him.  He is the perfect fit for me and encourages me to go for anything that comes to my mind. 

 He never complains when I'm overly OCD about our bed covers, jerking then around each night until they are just right. And that says just about everything you'd need to know about him. So kind, so loving, so patient. 


Resolution update

Two weeks ago while my babies slept I finished reading The Book of Mormon for the second time since January (Jan. 30-May 11)! My New Years resolution for 2015 was to read the Book of Mormon as many times as I could in the year.  I've never been a great reader so this was a lofty goal for me.  I have been so proud of my self and the way I've been able to stay on track for what I've wanted to do.

I am so in love with that book and how it makes me feel when I make the time to read it.  I know it is true scripture given to us by God.  I know that it works hand in hand with the Bible to bring us the full gospel of Jesus Christ. It has blessed my life immeasurably this year and I am so grateful for the success I've had in my goal to read it as many times as possible this year.  It is true and actual scripture and it is revelation given to us by God.  The heavens are not shut and He still speaks to us today to our own souls and through His living prophets upon the earth. I believe that with my whole soul. And I believe in Christ, He is my King. 


This past weekend we went to the lake with some friends from church up in north Georgia. They got a boat and john was signed off to drive it. I couldn't stop thinking about how attractive he looked driving it. I loved being out there with our kids.  When night came the light show started, I've never seen lightening bugs like they were out there! It was almost like strobe lights. 

We spent our time playing guitar and singing all together, playing cards, boating and tubing, s'moreing, cooking for each other and having great chats. It was a much needed little break with john murphys's grueling summer semester!


6 month tunnel

The is a moment in the morning when I get Avett out of his crib with a cup of "ca-chit milk" ready to go.  He asks for me to grab all three of his blankies out of the crib with grunts and points and then I wrap him up in my arms. I go downstairs, usually to the soundtrack of Evaleigh's many questions which have already started, and I flop down in the blue rocking chair recliner.  I stare in to his beautiful eyes and stroke his hair and for a moment we snuggle like we used to when he was so little.  It's one of the calmer moments of the day.  

I find a lot of peace in the moment and I try to savor it just a bit more because I know what lies ahead.  Avett is not exactly what I'd call an easy child.  I adore and love him endlessly but the past 6 months he has tested my patience in motherhood in ways that have driven me to the edge of my limits. It has taken me to my knees in prayer many times since and the answer I get almost every time is, "just be there for him."  It is easy to get caught up in the tasks of the day and when he is wailing at my knees and pushing me as hard as he can away from dinner or laundry or lunch it is so challenging for me to find that balance. 

While I finally feel like I am seeing some light at the end of the six month long tunnel there are still moments when he is just inconsolable. I am glad however that they have moved from days to moments.  I've never been able to figure out exactly a method with him that is dependable.  I just don't remember Evaleigh being this difficult. It is frustrating as his mom not to have the answers all of the time. 

I know I am supposed to be learning a lesson from all of this.  And I just hope that whatever it is that I am actually learning it and changing the way that God wants me to. I feel like He has been molding me with this trial of the last 6 months with Avett.  I want to grow and I want to be stretched and changed for the better and for certain that is what my children help me to do.  


Well I'm off to clean up from the day and rearrange the living room while John Murphy studies for his Finance test tomorrow. I'm looking forward to a quiet lonesome night with some music and my thoughts. 


What I have

Sometimes motherhood is overwhelming.  Sometimes it is frustrating and exhausting.  Sometimes it is stickier and messier than I'd like.  Sometimes I don't live up to my own expectations.  But I am doing the best job I know how with what I have.  I'm learning to be patient with them and myself each new day.  I am being shaped and refined by these two little people and I know I am exactly where I am supposed to be. And it is so so very good. 

"Motherhood isn't something you fit in when you have time, it is what God gave you time for."
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