Saturday, September 3, 2016

Down Time

I made THIS happen this morning.

Last night we had to cancel plans.  We needed to stay home and rest because every time I sneeze I pee my pants we have colds.

So it feels wrong to create a space of beauty when I let folks down yesterday.  The temptation to feel guilt over making something pretty and then taking time to enjoy it.

Last night I fell asleep asking God for more of the Holy Spirit in my life.  I asked for deeper desire to know the Lord.  And then this morning, all this.  Plus, low humidity.  Plus, ULTA is open and I am a mere 10 minute drive to the Beauty Heaven.

It's safe to say I'm a little torn up.

In other news, I've moved to Instagram.

@salsachipgirl is my handle

I reactivated my FB because my friend Michelle had a Lularoe party on the FB and oh my gosh why do we not have Lularoe in our town?  This I grieve, but I do my best to move on, shopping clearance racks here and there to ease the pain.

The other thing I am praying about is, how shall I put this?  It's my words.  There are some words in me and a stirring on my innards (sorry, is the word innards gross?  yeah, that's what I thought too).  OK, there is a stirring inside of me (yes, that is much better), to share some things.  And how does one go about sharing the words in a world full of words?  Not sure yet, but I am surely praying over it.

OK love you bye.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Beauty Shop Chatter

Every eight weeks I hop in my car and drive down to the beauty shop.

It has been about a year since I discovered that my fine hair looks best without layers.  The Texan in me took awhile to get used to this hair fact about myself.  I had gone all my life getting layers or texture of some sort and only in my wiser old age of 23 did I stumble upon this hair revolution.  One length looks healthier on me.

I am a highlight low light kind of person.  The year I got no color at all put in my hair was depressing.  I looked blah the entire year.  It was unfortunate.  It caused me to eat too many carbs and take too many naps.  So we found a way to get a hair line put back in the budget and I've been happier ever since.  I'm still eating carbs and napping but that is neither here nor there.

Tuesday night I couldn't sleep and was PMS-ing so naturally I watched YOU TUBE hair tutorials until three am.  I was this close to chopping my hair off and getting bangs when the second round of Melatonin kicked in and I finally fell asleep.

One of these days I'm going to do it though.  I'm going to go inside that salon with my candy bar and get a long pixie.  I am you just wait and see.

On a typical non-hormonal day, I am most content with an all one length bob.

There was the addition of my new hair piece that joined the family last Fall.  We have an oriental type store in town that sells all manner of faux hair.  I just wanted a pony tail thingy.  You have never seen so many options in one store.  When I asked the lady for help and told her it was my first time to buy hair, she reprimanded me and said, "Oh honey, you so behind!"

She would not let me try on the hair, per se, because some people, not me, but some people have things in their hair.  Ew.  Fine, I'll just take the one that wraps around my pony tail thank you.  Hair pieces are a fairly reliable option on a bad hair day.  I think the key to making it look natural is to pick it out a bit, but don't, DO NOT take your curling iron to it.  That will result in singeing your newly acquired hair which will result in an amateur emergency cut to remove said singed hair.

The beauty shop teaches me all kinds of life skills.  How to shellac at home.  The best kind of tortilla for a quesadilla.  Where to vacation.  I lay in the chair with my head in the shampoo bowl, country music blaring, and the beauty shop chatter makes me a better person.  Talk of eyebrows and air brushed make-up.  A wedding party bustling around the shop with fancy up-do's getting ready for the big day. Grandma in her white orthopedics along for the ride, her hair already coiffed.

In the olden days when I'd get a style, I lived for red lights so I could check out the new do in the mirror on the way home. Inevitably I'd catch every green light forcing me to wait until I got home to really check out the new do.  Those were stressful days of good fortune, what with the green lights and all.  These days my cut is the same and I like it this way.  Spruce up the old bob, stop by the library to grab my weekend reads, come home and try to take a nap which never works because I don't want to bend my pretty new hair.

The moral of the story is-get your hair done.  A beauty shop education will take you places, so get one every eight weeks.  How do you think I became as smart as I am?  Find you a style that suits you and be realistic.  One time I took a picture of the beautiful Jennifer Hudson in and got my hair done like hers.  Only problem was, she is African American.  Well, OK whatever, it didn't look great on me, lesson learned, maybe stick to a similar hair genre as yourself.  If you are feeling blah, slap some color up in their.  Download a hair app in the middle of the night and give yourself fire engine red hair and fringe bangs just for kicks.  You gotta keep things spiced up.  Sometimes when you've fallen off the fashion wagon, a trip to the beauty salon is all it takes to get you back on.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Three Years

Would you believe it has been a little over three years since I came home fully.


Eight years of pouring my heart and soul into my business ended one July afternoon with an email and a phone call.  The ending of an era and ushering in of a new one happened in ten short minutes. 

It was done, I was free.  Feeling lost, I walked around my house looking around, not sure what to do with myself.  With a husband out of the country and the boys at the neighbors, I found myself in a rare moment of quiet.  Alone.  Unemployed by the doing of my own hands.  I felt like a stranger in my own home, uncertain of what you do when you cut the chains that have held you prisoner for so long, what does freedom feel like?  What am I supposed to do?

Like riding a bike, I did what I do.  I cleaned my house.  Left to right, top to bottom, the order always the same.  Familiar rhythms found their way into the first moments of this new life, birthed only moments earlier.   I started in my bathroom and worked my way around our home fluffing and shining every surface.  Vacuum lines filled the carpets in every room as things began to take shape before my eyes.  Every single lamp in the house was on and the sun flooded through summer windows.  The candle flickered on the ledge of the bar filling the room with a sweet fragrance.  When the last room was complete I sat on the couch and admired the work of my hands.

Order had been restored in my home, and the beginnings of order being restored in my heart had begun its work too.

That evening the boys came home and we ate a simple supper together on the patio.  Slowly the sun set behind the house casting long shadows over the lawn.  The atmosphere felt different that night.  We laughed easy and I felt light on the inside.  Time was spread out before me like an open field.  Dishes cleared and washed, boys in bed, I sat on my couch wrapped in a heavy blanket of peace.

I had done it, I had come home.  I took the leap of faith and obeyed what I did not want to obey.  I gave up what I had worked so tirelessly for.  I traded my fears of an unknown future in for trusting that God was my faithful one, never failing me, not even once.  The numbers made no sense on paper, and only time would unfold the story of provision so lavish, always on time.

Three years later.


Another season silently takes her place on the stage of my life, as the old one quietly folds itself up. This time I am greeting my new post with a soul at rest.  A toddler almost three, two boys in youth, and an energetic second grader.  I have words to say and relationships to build.  My spirit is alive and I am filled with joy.  

Monday, April 11, 2016

Picky Eaters

My friends really came through for me with some excellent advice in regard to picky eaters.  I wrote it all down to process through everything they said, and today I'm sharing it with you.  There is bound to be something on this list that you can implement in your home if you are dealing with a picky eater.

Make sure they have healthy snacks.  This is the first place to cut out the junk.

Try to serve a veggie or fruit they like at every meal.

Ease in.  Don't serve an entire new menu in one setting and expect them to like it.

Have them cook with you.  Sometimes it's not the food, but the way we fix it.

Eat or don't eat, but this is all you get until breakfast.

Teach them this message, "Be thankful God chose to let you eat today."

Communicate mealtime and table expectations before you sit down.  Think through what your family rules are, and then communicate them clearly before mealtime.  They may need gentle reminders during the actual meal itself, but train them in a setting before the table. 

You may need to stop all snacks until they learn to eat at mealtime.

Take a bite of everything.

Eat what is served.

Offer a "no thank you" helping that scales to the size of the eater.  Once that is finished they can have more servings of the other choices.

They will eat if they are hungry!

I am not a short order cook, so eat or don't eat, but this is all I am making tonight.

It takes up to 15 times to develop a new taste for some foods.  Keep serving and keep trying.

Missing a meal or two will not hurt them.

Make the meal I want to make and have at least one item the picky one(s) like.  Put the things they don't like on their plates, they will come around and develop a taste for those foods.

Implement Ellyn Satter's Division of Responsibility in Feeding:

The parent is responsible for what, when, where.

The child is responsible for how much and whether.

Parent's Feeding Jobs:
  • Choose and prepare the food.
  • Provide regular meals and snacks.
  • Make eating times pleasant.
  • Step-by-step, show children by example how to behave at family mealtime.
  • Be considerate of children's lack of food experience without catering to likes and dislikes.
  • Do not let children have food or beverages (except for water) between meal and snack times.
  • Let children grow up to get bodies that are right for them.
Children's Eating Jobs:
  • Children will eat.
  • They will eat the amount they need.
  • They will learn to eat the food their parents eat.
  • They will grow predictably.
  • They will learn to behave well at mealtime.

Step by step through their growing up years, they build on their natural ability and become eating competent.

©2016 by Ellyn Satter published at

Ellyn Satter's Division of Responsibility material was taken from this site.  It is a great article with useful information that is easy to apply and understand.

Love me, Feed me by Katja Rowell, was recommended as a book resource if you are looking for further encouragement.

Thank you to all of my friends who took the time to offer words of encouragement on this subject.  I think your wisdom is going to help other mama's who are struggling in this department!  Three cheers for Blue Bell broccoli!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Setting A Feast

Simple is best.

Do not overcomplicate gathering a bag of tricks.


Art Supplies.

The option to nap.

The key is quiet activity for a specified amount of time, using no technology.

Finding the great books is something I have learned along the journey.

Here are some resources and names that you can Google if you need direction in finding great books to have on hand.

Carole Joy Seid Reading List

Sarah MacKenzie Reading List

Read Aloud Revival

Honey for a Child's Heart

Sally Clarkson Reading List

Whole Heart Reading List-this link is a compact treasure trove!

Give your children a new book on holidays and birthdays.  Build their library so quality material is always available to pull from.

Good quality colored pencils such as these Prismacolors are a favorite in our house.  Each kiddo has a set. They are high quality and very fun to work with.

Hobby Lobby is another jackpot place to look for art books, Prismacolor pencils and sketch books.

The curriculum we have used for two years now is called Higher Up Further In.  You can click on the link and browse the books we read, choose ones that look good, and add to your library that way.  This is a free resource.

Here is a sample of reading suggestions for our boys this year:
Mr. Popper's Penguins
The Story of Doctor Dolittle
Dick Wittington and His Cat
The Boxcar Children Series 1-19 only (RA 1st bk only)
English Fairy Tales illus by Rackham
A Wonder Book by Hawthorne
Child’s Book of Heroes edited by Bennett

Baby steps.  Step one is carving out daily time for no technology.  Step two is giving them a small handful of resources that they can pull from.  Set the feast and let them enjoy.

As Carole Joy Seid puts it, "You can have all of this for the price of a free library card!"

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

A Gift: time to be bored

Do you have a time period built into your day for quiet?

I am not talking about video games, phone time, or TV time. 

I am talking about a time of quiet with no technology. 

I am talking about creating a space where you have to think about what to do. 

I've noticed we have become reliant on our technology to fill the gaps, dadgummit. 

Mindless time wasting is the golden calf we worship. 

God hates our idolatry and we whiz right along on the path to death with no regard to our sin.

It almost sounds ridiculous to me that establishing a quiet time in our home has been hard for me, but it has.

When I hear older women exhort us younger moms to carve out "quiet hours" it sure sounds like something that would enrich our days.  Mentally I am on board with the idea.  In the early days when my house was filled with nappers I was on board.  Somehow my daytime nappers grew up. Somewhere in the process I avoided cultivating quiet time as they grew older.

There will be pushback and I don't want to deal with it so I foolishly turn a blind eye.  I tell them with my actions that we don't have to cultivate the hard things, that it is OK to fill the gaps with idol worship.

I do not want to be a woman who cowers away from what I believe will be the best because I am running from the pushback.

I don't want my children to be reliant on technology to fill the quiet spaces. 

It is a shiny trap laid by the enemy that seduces far too many of us and paralyzes the fruit that could be coming from our days.  A swipe of the finger is robbing our days, snatching away the legacy we could be leaving.

The first time I implemented quiet hours with my older children (read: this afternoon) it was borderline comical.  They moped around like they had just lost their best friend (read: Minecraft).  Mommy, mommy, mommy...I became the star of the show.  One kiddo sat in the chair across from me chewing his gum, rocking and just looking at me to pass the time.  What the???  And I'm nothing to look at today with my no showered crazy haired self.  Geesh.  He'll figure it out though, they all will.

What am I giving them if their only option during free time is dependent on something that plugs in?

This, by the way, this idea of unplugging a bit each and every day, is not a gift they are going to thank us for anytime soon.  Naw.  They are going to give us the business about it.  They are going to moan about it.  Today it was enough to drive me to a can of Dr. Pepper and some tater chips.  They're smart though, they'll figure it out.

Give those kids of yours space to have to figure things out.  In my next post I will give ideas on setting a feast for them to pull from.  Until then, consider this.

Is there a period of time you could carve out daily for some technology free quiet time?  Don't rob those kiddos of yours of this irreplaceable gift.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Crawling Out From Under The Mess

Life got busy.

Everything is bursting at the seems, from closets to drawers.  We've been barely staying afloat and just trying to survive from one thing to the next.

Every season is not this jam-packed, but this last month was one of the full types.  I am trying to make some intentional choices to get back on track.  Things like:

Make the choice to stay home and create margin.

This one just about kills me because there are so many things I want to do and people I want to see.  My kids also want to see and do.  Staying home can be a hard choice.  Evaluating our commitments is also something to consider.  Have we over-committed?  If so, their may be wisdom in scaling back.  There are a lot of things our family chooses to say no to because we place a high value on having plenty of time to cultivate our family relationships.  What do you value?  Are your choices accomplishing what you want?

Know what fills you up and energizes you, then take the time to do it.

Is it a book?  A clean house?  A hike?  Window shopping?  Cooking a great meal?  Whatever it is, create the space to do what energizes you.  Mine is order.  Chaos makes me shut down.  This second, my house is chaotic and it makes me struggle.  My solution?

I made a plan of attack.  My style of cleaning is a hybrid of Kon Marie and Flylady.  This month's Flylady habit is to spend 15 minutes a day decluttering.  I divided my house into the Zones that Flylady suggests.  Now I know my missions and can get busy.

Besides order, reading and writing are two biggies that fill my tank, so I am creating space for them.

If you are stuck right now, don't worry.  Look at your calendar and create some white space where you can focus some attention on doing things that energize you.