Thursday, May 31, 2012

Month In Photos | May 2012

Can you believe we are almost at the half year mark?


Time is marching on and we are just along for the ride.

It's summer and things should settle down a bit for us.

Here's to closing out a fantastic May!

1. Who's that girl?

2. Friday Night Lights for us is church softball with the Mr.  This kiddos had fun making the largest hopscotch game you've EVER seen with all kinds of twists and turns.

3. Does anyone else find security in seeing your husband study The Word?

4.  Just because she's cute.

5. What?!
The eggs are gone and we never saw them hatch.  We kept checking on them, so I'm hoping the mother was annoyed by our imposing and moved them to another nest. I sure hope it wasn't a predator.
*sad face*

6. We have an Elementary School graduate!!!

7. An attempt at a Memorial Day photo...#fail.
I have one very enthusiastic poser and one that would rather me find another passion than documenting his life.

8. More baseball!!!

9. Quick Memorial Day weekend in Memphis.

10. K's flower garden is FINALLY blooming.

11. Someone has already been kissed by the sun.

Happy Summer!!!


Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Simple Things {5.27.12} | Little Piggies

This little piggy...

I hope you've been lucky enough to have been exposed to the interactive nursery rhyme.

My little ones have always loved this game.

This little piggy went to the market,
This little piggy stayed home,
This little piggy had roast beef,
This little piggy had none.
This little piggy went...
"Wee Wee Wee" all the way home.

Well, that's how it used to go in our house.

Until my little K demanded equal opportunity for the less fortunate "stay home" and "had none" piggies.

It was determined that it made her sad that the one "stayed home" and the other "had none".

She labeled "stayed home" and "had none" piggies as "he" and said "I think he needs to go too" and "I think he needs to have reese's cups".

Completely melted by her compassion we proceeded to adjust that which was long overdue.

This little piggy went to the market,
This little piggy went too,
This little piggy had roast beef,
This little piggy had reece's cups.
This little piggy went...
"Wee Wee Wee" all the way home.

Sorry Mother Goose, we delight in the spirit of your original poetic charm, but our adjusted version is in hopes of keeping a merry little heart.

I'm sure you can relate.

I hope whatever nursery rhymes you are chanting this week induce a merry heart.


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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Currently Craving | Chalkboards

I'm seriously crushing on these chalkboards!!!
{ 1. 2. 3. 4. }
I pinned these as inspiration knowing that I will get around to doing a DIY chalkboard soon.

Yeah, I could go buy one, but I really like the idea and the uniqueness of doing one from a frame or something out of the ordinary.

I was treasure hunting a while back and picked up a frame for $7.

I'm putting the finishing touches on it and will show you how it turned out soon!

Stay tuned...

What are you currently craving?


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Me & My Gang | The Middle Man

{ Instagram }
How did we get here so fast?

He's an Elementary school graduate and I'm a teary eyed Mom.

Middle School?  Really?

Today my E left Elementary school for the last time.

He's been such a good student.

He proudly wears an A average.

It's SUMMER!!!

 We are going to try and slow down and soak it up before we are faced with new beginnings in the Fall.

Did I mention I'll have a new Preschooler in the Fall as well?



I'm sure we'll all grow this coming year in many ways.

I hope whatever you and yours face this coming season forces growth and brings you much joy.


Sunday, May 20, 2012

The Simple Things {5.20.12} | Tea & Crumpets

Do you ever get captivated in child's play?

Today, K and I were feeling a bit under the weather with sore throat and all that accompanies it.

The boys went ahead with the normal church schedule and K and I stayed in our jammies all day.

Not the usual, but nice.

Nice to slow down and just be.

I wish you could have heard the sweet conversation that occurred during this setting. 

She has the sweetest little cafe personality including a fake British accent coupled with a little southern hospitality.

She said "everything is free in my shoppe".

That's my kind of sweet shoppe!

While not the entrepreneur, she's the perfect host, baking up yummy goodness and serving tea and crumpets along with captivating conversation.

Watching her reminds me that my job as her mother is greater than any other I have.

It's amazing to me that she is already developing homemaking skills and the natural instinct is already there to love her doll babies.

Talk about an opportunity!  

The opportunity is there for all of us, we just have to accept the challenge.

So, the next time you are invited for tea and crumpets, I urge you to willingly accept.

May God grant me the wisdom to teach her to be meek, kind, trustworthy, thankful, loving and all things Christ like.

Let "her" touch the dying, the poor, the lonely and the unwanted according to the graces we have received and let "her" not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work.
~ Mother Teresa ~


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Friday, May 18, 2012

Me & My Gang | Out With The Old...

{via Instagram}

Two weeks ago today, I was prepping for my first EVER garage sale.

It was crazy folks!

My oldest is almost 12.

So, 12 years of toys, costumes, name it.  Not to mention a 4 year collection from my sweet K.

Pretty much anything you can think of, we had it.

It was a junk digger's dream!

I usually participate in both a Spring and Fall local consignment sale to get rid of the kid's stuff for more room and recycled money, but time didn't permit this year and I missed both the Fall 2011 and Spring 2012 sales.  Not to mention, I had a ton of old home stuff that was just taking up space in drawers and closets.

I purged every room of our house of things that didn't make the cut and placed them ALL in my dining room.

Well, the dining room ended up not being enough space, so you can see it overflowed to my foyer and hall.


I seriously under estimated the amount of work that goes into a garage sale.

After a very long Friday of prepping, 6 a.m. came very early on Saturday.

Mother nature thought it would be funny to give me a little gag gift to kick off the day...thunderstorms!

So my garage sale became a real "garage sale" as we brought it indoors...a bit of a "damper".

The Mr. took the kiddos to the Zoo (more to come) with their cousins while I accepted $2 offers from people that were apparently well seasoned scavengers.

I just wanted it gone and the money was just a bonus.

The sun ended up coming out and it was a good day overall.

Drum roll......

One Craigslist post, 5 yard sale signs, 500 flights of stairs, a million price tags, two or three "maybe we should call it offs", a thunderstorm, 7 hours of wheeling and dealing, one drop off consignment run and one Goodwill dump later, our success equated to $500 and change.

I'd say that it was worth it!

Now for the "In With The New" part.

The plan for this recycled pocket change is to purchase the kids Summer clothes/necessities, a special treat for each of them for willingly giving up old toys and helping and maybe a small treat for the COO of this gig.  ;-)

If you are thinking of a garage sale, JUST DO IT!

It's a lot of work, but it pays off.

Be inspired!


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Design | {Pinned} I've Been Framed

I loved this idea from the moment I saw it!.  

It's an intentional way to get into your family's heart without ever saying a word. 

Here's how...

I did it!

I made something I pinned here and here on the Anna & Co. "I CAN MAKE THAT - DIY" board.

I love my NEW MEMO BOARD made with repurposed frame and a fabric burlap insert!!!

Grant it, it was super EASY as pie and no rocket science required, but I made it.

I totally did a copy cat from here, but that's the beauty of Pinterest, right?

I knew that I wanted to give several older "gold" frames a new life because I still love their structure and beauty.  

I've done this before, and again, with other frames and was pleased with the outcome.

Amazing what a little paint will do.  Have I mentioned I'm paint junkie?

I also roughed them up a bit with sand paper to give them a more primitive look.

I've been trying to decide the exact placement and how all these little guys will find their way back in the home.  We shall see...

Overall, I love my burlap memo board!!!

Seriously guys, it's a spray painted frame with a cut to fit burlap insert.

Super easy!

 The family has grown to expect a daily periodic message as it sits on the counter of our kitchen where they CAN'T miss it.

E will say, "Hey Mom, what's today's message?" when I haven't changed it in a couple days.

I love it!!!

Instant message your way into their hearts by leaving intentional messages that are thought provoking and daily reminders coupled with inspiration.

Now, go make you one!  You'll LOVE it!


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Friday, May 11, 2012

Me & My Gang | {Mother's Day} My Mommy Story

~ Updated from 2011 archives "MOM-Sense" ~

I've been reading so many things lately about motherhood that have inspired this post.

Thank you to all the Moms that take the time to write about their emotions.

This is my "Mommy" story.

12 years ago if you would have asked me about children and being a Mom, I would have said...

 "Yeah, someday I want to be a MOM."

I would have said it casually, without enthusiasm and no true excitement.

I would have told you that my pregnancy would be different.

I would smile through delivery, my hair would be fixed and I would have freshly shaved legs.

I would have told you that I would have perfect children.

They would never act up, always say please and thank you and go to bed at 8pm.

You get the picture, right?!... I didn't have a clue about being a MOM or what it meant.

~ Ethan Holland Bledsoe - June 13, 2000 (the day he was born) ~

In all honesty, I was terrified at the thought of becoming the three letter word.

I remember crying when I got the news and feeling so guilty that I wasn't having the exact emotions/thoughts I thought I would have when being told that I'm with child.

I was a wreck.

What next?  Can I do this?  My life is over?  Will I get fat?

About 8 weeks into both of my pregnancies I was diagnosed with HYPEREMISIS.

Not fun to say the least.

I lost 20 plus pounds in the 1st trimester with both children and was hospitalized 3 times.

Not how I had planned.

Little did I know then, that none of this MOM stuff would be how I planned.

The saying "Never say Never" comes to mind.

My hands and feet were swollen and I was simply exhausted.

Needless to say, I didn't feel like the beautiful glowing pregnant woman I had drawn up in my day dreaming of being a MOM.

~ MaKenzie Grace Bledsoe - August 13, 2007 (the day she was born) ~

Both of my children were born 1 week early and both were planned deliveries.

So, I DID get to shave my legs.  *wink*

You hear that holding your babies for the first time is magical, but you don't even know until you've experienced it.

Regardless if it's in a hospital room or an adoption facility.

That moment is PRICELESS!!!

That's really the ONLY love at first sight.

~ The day I became a MOM ~

I remember bringing Ethan (my first born) home and thinking...


I know, I'll just sit here and watch him until he cries and then I'll hold him and feed him.

Yeah, that's what a MOM does, right?!

So, I did.  I stared at him in disbelief that he was mine.

Disbelief that he was so tiny.

Disbelief that two days ago he was inside me.

~ I became a mother of 2 ~

No one ever told me about a MOM's guilt or second guessing EVERY SINGLE decision you make.

Those impulse thoughts....

Is he still breathing?

Why is he crying?

Am I doing this right?

Will I ever get any sleep?

I'm not a good MOM!

~ Ethan was so in love with Kenzie ~

Somehow, it all works out.  And those tiny fingers and toes captivate your heart.

You live for their snaggle tooth grins and double eyed winks.

You pause to hear them giggle and run rather slow for them to be able to tackle you and smother you with juicy snotty kisses.

You find a newly drawn smiley face on a perfectly blank canvas (which happens to be your dining room chair) and the only thing you can think is "Wow, what an artist!"

All that to say, as a mother, I think we all struggle with the same concerns.

This precious gift of being a MOM is the biggest job we'll ever be given.

How do we GET IT RIGHT?

Knowing what all it takes to be a MOM, I dedicate this post to my MOM.

I realize now and understand the corners of your heart.

I get the sleepless nights and the "just because I said so".

I get "you can't wear that" and "wait for him to call you".

I get "there is no other feeling like being a Mom".

I get it and I thank you for all the worrying, all the sleepless nights, all the working, all the talks on the phone when I didn't think I could do it, all the prayer and all that comes with being my Mother.

I'm still learning, but would like to think that I have more of an understanding of this MOM labeling.

Make sure you Mom knows she is special this weekend.

Happy Mother's Day to ALL fellow Mothers!

Blessings, Anna

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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Me & My Gang | Meet In The Middle

Last night I attended a parent info night at the MIDDLE SCHOOL!!!!

Seriously, how did this happen?

Shouldn't my E still be toddling around with his sippie cup and saying "hold you mommy"...shouldn't he?

Middle School y'all?!!!

I have to tell you that I have been mentally preparing for this transition for next school year.  However, this meeting snuck up on me and left me feeling a little caught of guard.

My heart that is.

Ethan has been in private Christian school up until last year and due to a few uninvited situations we were forced to make the decision to place him in a local public environment for 5th grade.  That was really hard!

Now, the very next year, MIDDLE SCHOOL.

Not to mention, I will be registering my sweet Kenzie for pre-school very soon.

How much can a mommy take?

I love watching them develop, grow and embrace each stage of their life, but as a mother a little piece of me hurts inside.

I have to admit, my heart skipped a beat when I entered the middle school and saw the "weapons are prohibited" sign at the very first door.  Then I sat and listened to counselors and principles tell me how much change happens in 6th grade.

Weapons?  He's still a baby.

I know, you guys are the lucky recipients of my exposed anxiety, because this is where I come for therapy.

It inflicts great anxiety to think of all the NEW he will face this year, but I know he's up for it and he's one of the BEST little guys around.  His foundation is SOLID and he is no doubt a leader.

Now for me, it's going to take a lot of prayer and a little bit of letting go.

I invite your prayers and advice for this next stage of my life.


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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Month In Photos | April 2012

I know, seriously, we are well into getting May flowers and I'm just now writing about our April showers.

I had a few technical difficulties and I'm still not sure what I'm going to do next month.  Not to mention that Spring tends to spread me a little thin.

I'm not really sure what is going on with the new online program I'm using to do Month-in-Photos now that Picnik is gone, but it's just not up to par.  The photos are fuzzy and it's limited, but I'm posting anyway for consistency.

I guess in my "spare" time, I'll need a crash course is PSE 101.  I can move around and edit a bit, but need to enhance my skills as it relates to clipping masks, etc.

Stay tuned....

1. The warmer temps are inviting cool treats that result in colorful fingers and tongues.

2. Spring is always coupled with baseball fields and flying dirt clouds...if your child plays baseball, you get it. Blah!

3. K is enjoying her handmade swing made by her daddy.  
Who am I kidding?  We've all been on it a time or two.  :-)

4. Just like her mommy, she zones out/stares when sleepy.  Bless her. 

5. I think K and her neighborhood friend (Hailey) are onto something.  
A pool salon with a floating drink caddy.  I'd go.

6. E performed in "I Witness News - Live from Jericho" hosted by our church's children's ministry.  The performance was amazing!!!  So proud of him!

7. It's never too early to teach gratitude.  K writing (in crayon) a few thank you notes on her cherry picked puppy/kitten note cards.  Sweetness!!!

8. Zoe's favorite spot, under K's bed where she sun bathes and thinks she's hidden from the madness.

I hope April brought you many blessings.

Happy May!!!


Monday, May 7, 2012

Encouragement | Stinking Thinking

Just a little encouragement to take control of STINKING THINKING this week.

Happy Monday!!!


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

He Said - She Said | Fear Makes The Monster Look Bigger

Kenzie: Daddy, but I'm scared of the dark.

Me: Sweetie, there isn't anything in a dark room that isn't there before you turn off the lights.

Kenzie: I know, but....

Allen: Sweetie, tell Daddy what it is you are scared of?

Kenzie: I don't really know, but when it's dark....well, it just breaks my heart up.

Bless her heart.  She has joined the large population of people that are scared of the dark.

It's true, fear makes the "monster" look bigger, even when there is no monster at all.

Boy, that could teach.

How many times have we/I allowed fear to dwell in our hearts and minds and mold a big ole' monster out of absolutely nothing.

Whether it's a child scared of the dark or fear that rest in your heart today of another sort, I pray that this four letter word will have no source of life, knowing it's a product of the master enemy.

I pray your heart isn't broken up by fear.


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