Saturday, October 22, 2016

New Blog

Hey I have a new blog and new name!! 
Head on on over to Our Anchored Life to check it out

Love Ash

Friday, May 6, 2016

Mom Life: Thoughts on Motherhood

As I approach my second Mothers Day I thought it would be good to reflect on what has helped me the most when it comes to mothering. I read parenting books, ask friends for advice and pray a lot when it comes to parenting our little girl Lily. Here are few things that have really influenced my mothering these last 15 months. 

These books have been an incredible help! We practiced the eat-wake-sleep method and loved it. Lily was sleeping through the night at 8 weeks old. She was and is a content and happy baby. I just finished Pre-Toddler Wise and next on my list is Toddler Wise. 

The overall theme in these books is "Begin as you mean to go" it is summed up best taken right out of Chapter One 

"We encourage parents to begin as you mean to go during the babyhood transition months (5-12 months), because this is a critical period of brain formation and adaption. It is a time when parents are intentionally (or unintentionally) imprinting learning patterns that will stay with the child for many years to come. Since growth and development takes place in stages, with each new experience building upon the previous, it is imperative that the first learning patterns established be the right patterns- thus, begin as you mean to go!" 

2) I learned about something called containment from two of my favorite authors Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend. 
They describe containment this way. 

"Containment is the mothering function in which the mom literally keeps the child's feelings until he can handle them for himself." 

"This is what containing is. She takes in and holds on to the feelings that the child can't bear. Then, she gradually feeds them back to the child in a way he can digest them without being overwhelmed by them. In this way, she then prepares the child for taking responsibility for his feelings when he has matured sufficiently." The specifics of containing are Soothing, Validating, Structuring, Confronting and Thinking.

"When babies or young children are upset, their only comfort is the secure safety of a loving mother. When they are hurting, and a loving mother offers comfort, their misery is transformed to safety and gratitude. When that happens literally thousands of times, they come to expect and end to their pain, and they develop the virtue we call hope -the expectation that good will come eventually, no matter how bad things are right now." 

These two principals were life changing for me. I am in awe of the responsibility we have as mothers. I thought it was also a profound view into how God loves and cares for us when we his children are hurting. 

3) A few helpful tips from Focus on the Family's 

- Give them a choice over small issues. There are so many things they have no control over but small choices help them develop decision making skills that will help later on in life. 

- Don't ask "Can you?" If they need to stop doing something that you don't want them to do you should not ask them "Can you stop or Can you come here" tell them to stop or tell them to come to you. By asking them the questions you are giving them a chance to answer with a no. 

4) Playing and living in the moment trump cooking and cleaning. 

5) Let Dad (Matt) do things how he does them and don't interfere. This is by far the hardest and most challenging thing for me. I am learning that just because he does things different, it doesn't mean they are wrong. 
Lily Rose 15 months old 

Currently there are two disciplines I wish I was better at and I hope I can start getting my act together and putting them into practice.
1) Getting up earlier. Ugh, this is so hard because I love to sleep.
2) Meal planning, I have tried meal planning here and there but never stuck with it consistently. My excuse is I can't find a cute enough printable to write our weeks meals down on hahahahahahaha. What a lame excuse :) 

Thanks for the taking the time to read some of what I've learned along the way. I know women say this all the time but it really is true; motherhood is the most amazing, exhausting, exciting, scary and wonderful role I have ever played in my life. I wouldn't have it any other way. 

Happy Mother's Day 
xo Ash  
Photos: Traveling Suitcase Photography

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Lily's Rose is ONE

Hi!! It's been so long since my last blog, I am so rusty when it comes to blogging these days well actually this past year haha. Becoming a mom sure took most of my energy. But luckily I'm getting back into the swing of it. I wanted to share pictures from Lily's first birthday party. It was such a fun and happy day. 

We held the party up at the camp where we live. There was plenty of room and it didn't hurt that there is a walk in fridge that I was able to store all of the food and desserts in. 
My vision was shabby chic, and a rosy pink. I pulled some ideas from pinterest and got to work. 
First I reused these coffee filter pom poms that I made for my sister in laws bridal shower a couple years back. These are cheap and easy to make! They add such a festive feeling to an event. 
This is the only picture I got of them. 

Next is the backdrop. I have used this backdrop for so many events but needed to change the color scheme. I went searching through my arsenal of fabric and found most of this soft pink, rosy color. I couldn't of been happier with it.

Gold balloons are from Etsy 
We had a baked potato bar with all the fixings. 

I saw this cool picture collage on pinterest on a much smaller scale. I have tons of extra fence boards and so my brother in law Todd made a stand for the back and Matt did a great job of putting together the ONE of pictures of Lily's first year! I haven't taken it down yet, I love it so much :) 

Her monthly pictures hung near the drinks. 

Table Centerpieces 

I set up games, coloring, toys and face painting out on the deck for the kids. 

I think this is my favorite part of the whole party, the cake. I made the cake but I did have some help decorating it. My first attempt was a run through a couple weeks before the party and lets just say it was tragic. So I called my friend Ashley who makes such beautiful cakes and she came and helped me. The buttercream recipe is delicious its Billy's Buttercream. Side note, I did not add as much powdered sugar as the recipe calls for. 

The bunting banner was made using this free printable from The Resplendent 

Lily had a different smash cake that was made of whole wheat flour, bananas and applesauce, she hated it :( 

As the kids left they got hot chocolate in a jar. 

Lily was such a fun little hostess. We are so proud of the little lady that she is becoming. Having her in my life has forever changed the way I see the world. Words can not express the joy she brings. 

xo ash