WHEN TIME DOESN’T STOP

Hello old friend, wonderful little space and reader, I’ve missed you.

Time, it moves, with or without us. Life is funny that way, I’ve seen it happen in all sorts of ways. For our family, it’s been this transition to get ready to move (hence the long absence here). I know it doesn’t sound that crazy or anything….it’s just a move. Yes, we are moving. We currently live in a small town off the central coast of California.

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The funny thing is, when I first moved to said small town, I wasn’t all that keen on it (I had in my mind that I was a city girl). Well, it’s since become home to me and I value the relationships that we’ve made here. This transition started over a year ago when my husband began looking for a job in music and ministry. Through a lot of prayer and open doors we decided last January that we were going to move forward in this move.

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Why in the world are we still in “transition” you ask? Well, the job that Brad is going to be doing is a non-paid position, yes you read that right…so, since last January (2015) we have been working on raising our financial support, we are actually still in that process. God has been so good and has been connecting us with so many great people who want to come along side of us! This has been an adventure and a walk of faith for us.

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I don’t think we thought we would ever be doing something like this but I will say that it’s better than what we could have come up with and I think that’s kind of how God likes to work. We are hoping to get to France, oh wait, I didn’t say that yet…yes, southern France this spring some time (pending finances). OK, now I should say we are really looking forward to what God has for us in specifically, Aix-En-Provence. Brad will be working at a little local church doing the music as well as hopefully helping the community in many various ways including working with the refugees that have come to that area. We very much believe this is where we are supposed to be and so began the process of connecting with others who also see the great need that Europe has right now.

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The process has been anything but easy but there has been so much growth along the way and so many new relationships that make it more than worth while and really what’s it’s all about. We are not going alone, we are going with lots of love and support from others. We hope and pray that everything that we are able to do there with will be a blessing to all that are joining with us. There are so many people there who need love and light and we hope we can bring a little bit of that to them. untitled-283

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This month starts a new chapter for us as Brad’s last day of work was last week, we gave our notice to our apartment yesterday and will soon be applying for visas to live abroad. In the mean time, we will continue to reach for this goal and call that God has set out for us. He is so faithful and we have seen so many answered prayers already! I’ve never been one to have a “word” for the year but I seem to be seeing the word PEACE this year over and over, so I think as it continues to move forward I am going to focus on what peace means and that it doesn’t really have anything to do with circumstances but rather a state at which the heart and soul are in and I am choosing that for me. I’m sure there will be many times this year I will need to remind myself of this! ;) untitled-376

SO, as this crazy adventure continues to develop…I’m just going to go ahead and say thanks, thanks for coming with me!

xoxo Hannah

PITCAF

No, you didn’t misread the title. No, you probably haven’t heard of the word Pitcaf…I should say place.

Do you remember if there was a time in your life where your imagination seemed to blend seamlessly with reality? Perhaps you had a friend you were fond of that only you seem to remember, or a game you played in the backyard that turned the green grass to hot lava? Maybe you had a sand pit that took you deep in the dessert where you unearthed all sorts of archeological finds…or that tree you could climb and find yourself within reach of an enchanted jungle. Sweet tender places; only the imagination of a child can take you there.

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Pitcaf. This is his world. His little four year old imagination has dreamed up a most magical place indeed. It’s an island for starters, much like that of Neverland, but farther mind you. I’m told you can fly, pixie dust is not needed. There are all sorts of mysterious terrain on this island – jungles with trees that you can bounce on and desserts filled with camels, snowy mountains (volcanoes included) and a very little beach just the right size for Sawyer to play on. The moon is something to behold as it’s very large and always full. I’m also told there are one-hundred-million stars to light up the night as well (He is here with me now – letting me know).

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There are animals who can be the best of friends, pirates and ghosts, cave wolves, lots of silly monkeys hanging in the trees, singing mermaids in the sea and treasure hunting, lots of treasure hunting! It’s the hot season currently which means it’s really windy there right now. The flowers are in bloom and if you’re lucky you may get a peek of the tiny butterflies who live within them. Of course, there is a sign to let you know not to smell the flowers or else you will wake the butterflies up.

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Hudson tells me about Pitcaf quite often and never ceases to go into detail about this magical island that’s farther than Neverland (that’s always included). I was talking to Brad recently about it all and we decided that we needed to document it to some degree. I love how easy it is for him to envision it all and to tell me that Jake (from Disney’s Jake and the Neverland Pirates – his favorite show) is meeting him there. There are times when the whole family is allowed to go there with him and at others, just Sawyer. When Hudson isn’t in this dream land, he is usually somewhere else in that creative little mind of his. It’s been so fun to see where his imagination takes him and how in-depth it can get, even to see little brother look at him and know what the plan is.

They are going on an adventure!

WANDERING IN THE WILDFLOWERS

A long time ago when spring first sprung here on the central coast of California, we packed up the kids and drove out to see the wildflowers with some dear friends.

a long, long, time ago…I seriously can’t even remember how many weeks ago this was. I do remember that we had a blast though! As the boys grow it’s gotten harder to spend time here. I’m somehow homeschooling Hudson, or un-schooling as some may call it now. We spend a lot of time learning now, I’m hoping to share some of that in the nearby future. He loves it and has pretty much initiated the whole thing. I would have never thought I would end up spending so much time as his teacher…in that way. To today’s post though!

Hang in there…I couldn’t stop taking pics, my subjects were too cute and the surrounding – too gorgeous!

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Let me introduce you to little Olivia, the sweetest little thing you could ever be around. She is such a doll.

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As soon as we arrived the boys went stick hunting, as they do. Exploring right behind their father. It didn’t take Hudson long before he decided he wanted to build a fort/camp/fire…anything cool you can make with sticks pretty much. So, on with the gathering he went.

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and no words needed here because…

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mostly, we just wandered

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we brought our kickball and all the boys went crazy. At the end of our day it ended up pouring on us and we spazzed and forgot the ball…just thought we’d make a donation to the fields ;)

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Liv relaxed among the flowers, while smelling and trying to eat them. Such a lady. wildflowers10     wildflowers17

and this spunky kid, filling up our hearts with joy and laughter. He is a kick. (side note – two nights ago he figured out how to stick a fork to his belly during dinner time and made sure that Brad and I would see it..he’s such a goof. I see class clown in his future. He thought he was the funniest thing…and he was.)

 

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sweet moments with mama (aka my sweet friend Beth) <3 – who happens to be the best.

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and a rare family pic, thanks to our man Scott! It was drizzling by this time – there is a water spot on this shot…worth it though!

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Aren’t these kinds of days with good friends just the best? I think so. These pics make me want to go back pronto.

Till next time, folks! peace out.

 

TRANSITIONS FROM ONE CHILD TO TWO

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Where to begin on this one….I suppose a year and a half ago before we knew our little Sawyer.

Time is a funny thing. I remember when I had Hudson and those months leading up to two kids, I really tried to soak up his voice, expressions, cuddles and even the way he was grumpy (which wasn’t often as an only child). Hudson was two and a half when Sawyer was born, I suppose age probably had something to do with the timing of his sudden need to question mama and daddy all the time (it was around this time he actually stopped calling me mama…tear). I am officially called mommy and he is big brother, large and in charge, as he would have you believe. But man oh man, the transition!

I was just remembering the hardest part about being pregnant the second time, the level of tiredness. There is not much time to rest when you have to take care of a toddler, so going into to labor I was already getting nervous about having a new born as well. I am so thankful for friends and family that helped during those first weeks, I would not have made it otherwise!

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I knew the whole family was in for some major changes. Some of those would be a little harder to adjust than others. A couple of those things included, less one on one time – for everyone, less homemade dinners (we ate a lot of frozen tamales and pizza…probably for a good year), less showers, more laundry, less sleep, a messier home, less overall organization (and just to give you a picture, neither my husband or I are very organized to begin with), less alone time…just to mention a few and not including more hormones and moods << every-ones! The adjustment…

 

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Oh, the adjustment. I’m not saying everyone deals with adding more kids into the mix this way, but this is what it looked like for us. It was hard, really hard. It has also been the best thing. I think it’s just been in the last couple of months that I feel like I can breathe again. Part of the – my brain is not working so well – came from lack of sleep for the first year. Sawyer started sleeping through the night at 11.5 months and we were nursing during that time as well. After that, I felt like I was finally in recovery mode and things began to get a little lighter. This past year and half definitely has some blurry spots but I can look back now and see so much growth!

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My how we have grown! These two. Having children is a sure way of providing an opportunity for change. Thank the Lord, I am not same as I was before these guys. They love hard and need to be loved hard. Some great things that have come from a season of transition: I don’t care about my home the same way – my standard has majorly lowered, it’s not that I don’t prefer it clean but I can see that if I can let some things go that everyone will be happier and in reality toddler hood and toys everywhere is just a season. Letting go of the house has given me the freedom to stop and play with my kids more, joining them in their precious world. I am much more patient now which has helped everyone! I try not to take things too seriously, and living with three boys I can tell I will continue to learn this. It’s helped Hudson be more aware of others and allows him to continue to grow in kindness and selflessness (as well as we hope it will for Sawyer). Your heart grows by a gazillion times. You get to see yourself in your kids in totally different ways as well as see their own uniqueness. And I can not explain the blessing of getting to see them love each-other! My heart! – Nothing really compares and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Another incredible change has been in our marriage, we have never been in a better place. I think God has worked in us and through these kids and with wisdom from others, but as crazy as it seems, we are in the best place we’ve ever been!

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What’s more is now that I’ve come through the fog I get to do life with two incredible boys who couldn’t be more different. There are still hard days or weeks but the beauty and blessings far outweigh those things. I will say though, without Jesus and coffee…who knows where this mama would be :)

THE MOUNTAIN TOP

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As we say goodbye to January and hello to the oddly spelled February, I remembered how lovely it was to break in this new year on the first day of January. Bradley and I were originally just going to go for a drive and find a field to run around in but we ended up on this beautiful hike instead. Had I known we were going to go up a mountain I would have probably worn different shoes, my feet were feeling it by the time we went down. The view though! Hudson,  took to the role of mountain man and was very happy to run up and down and climb on anything we would let him. Sawyer, also did his fair share of wandering (mostly after big brother). It was a crisp day and by the end of it we had two tuckered out boys with red little noses. That family picture was the best we could come up with and the kids were not into “posing” for the camera – as you can clearly tell ;)

What a gift it is to be able to do life with these boys I get to call mine.