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A New Adventure

Hi Friends!

As of this week, I've started working with Noonday Collection- I'm so excited!

I had heard of Noonday and had seen some of the jewelry on various blogs, but it wasn't until I went to my first trunk show (which was also a fundraiser for our next adoption- thanks, Monica!) that I really got hooked! I fell in love with the company and their mission to create economic opportunity for the vulnerable. When Noonday partners with artisans, it empowers them to grow sustainable businesses. Noonday creates a marketplace for their goods, and in return, artisans are able to have dignified jobs at living wages. 

I love this... since 2011, Noonday has grown and now works with 28 artisan groups, directly impacting 2,000 artisans in over 10 countries, with an impact reaching 8,800 family members. Isn't that amazing! I could go on and on... seriously. And if you want to read for yourself, check out the website, see the pictures of the artisans and read their stories- it's incredible. 

To be completely honest, I never thought I'd get into direct sales- in fact that term kind of gives me shivers. And I have 3 little boys with a 4th on the way- I'm not bored or looking for something to fill my time, that's for sure! But after hearing the stories of the artisans and seeing the impact that Noonday is having (not to mention the beautiful jewelry), I just couldn't imagine buying jewelry anywhere else. I was talking and thinking about it all the time and after much prayer, I decided to join. 

I see my role with Noonday as being someone who is trying to help get the word out- I want my friends and family to buy Noonday because as Noonday grows more people are given an opportunity to get out of poverty, live in homes, send their children to school, and buy needed medication. We take these things for granted here in the states. 

Do you want to help? If so, you can shop my site or email me to book a trunk show, and don't worry, I'd never pressure anyone to buy something they didn't want. Noonday sells itself. Once you hear the stories and see the beautiful jewelry, I'm sure you'll fall in love, too! 


And as an added bonus, if you comment on this post telling me your favorite thing about spring or your favorite accessory, I'll enter your name to win a $25 voucher good towards purchasing something beautiful from Noonday. (And please be patient with me; I'm new to Noonday and to blog giveaways so I'm still learning the ropes!). Since this blog has basically been dead since we brought our twins home, I'm giving the giveaway a little time... the contest will end Wednesday, January 28 at noon (12pm CST).


Playing With Your Kids

Two good articles on the importance of playing with our kids. As I've been increasingly distracted with things going on around me, this was a good reminder. 

So the last couple of days, I've taken more time to fly planes around the house, fight fires, engage in car races, put bad guys (read: stuffed monkeys) in jail (read: closet), and build "houses" for all manner of toys out of duplos. And you know what? It's been fun! 


Growing Up

Parenting little ones is such a strange mix of letting go and hanging on... on the one hand, I can't wait for the boys to get a little bigger, for Luke to start sleeping through the night, to be done nursing, for the twins to start being a little more independent, etc. etc. and yet with that comes losing the baby stages and little years that are both hard and wonderful at the same time. 

Here is Luke wearing one of Josiah's jammies. I bought only one 12 month sleeper for the twins since they were already one when they came home. Josiah wore this for a short time, but he wore this- it blows my mind. Where did the time go? 

Dusting off the Blog

Where do you even begin when you wait almost six months between posts?

Luke is just over 7 months and is still just the sweetest thing. He has a very happy, easy going temperament, so if he's fussy, there's usually a good reason! He's rolling like a champ and now sleeps on his belly. He's trying desperately to crawl, and often finds himself in a plank position or scooting backwards. Sometimes I feel bad that he gets set down so often, put in the chair, exersaucer, or on the floor. I really wish I could hold him and play with him more, but having two other little ones makes it nearly impossible.

The strange (or maybe not strange) thing is that I feel like I don't have enough time with the twins either. And I guess that's just what happens when you add more kids to your family. It's amazing how your perspective changes. When I just have Luke, he seems so easy. And when I just have the twins, they seem so easy. It's the combination that makes for chaos. Just last week I took the twins to the grocery store while Don stayed home with Luke. I used to dread taking the two of them to the grocery store, packing up the cart or supervising while they drove little carts, strapping into car seats, unloading groceries... you get it. I couldn't believe how easy it now seemed! Not that two is easy or even one for that matter, but you get the point. 

The twins are growing and changing like crazy. Their vocabulary has skyrocketed and they say the funniest things that sound so grown up! I wish I could think of a few good examples, but of course now that I'm taking the time to blog, my mind is blank. Some of their favorite things include: playing with cars and planes (the ABSOLUTE favorite!), building with trains and blocks, reading books and playing games with Don and I (we just started Hi-Ho Cherry-O and Hungry Hippos). Their favorite book right now is the Big Picture Story Bible. It shocks me how well they know the stories! When they're looking at it on their own, they can almost tell the stories back verbatim. Like today when I was feeding Luke, I overheard Jacob "reading" it to Josiah. 

Here's what I heard: (pointing to the picture) "And this is Pilate. And you know what he said? He said to Jesus, 'Are you a King?' And Jesus said, 'My kingdom is not of this world.' And Jesus is a king." They both really know the stories well and I'm thankful for this resource that helps them see that the Bible isn't just stories, but is about a God who always keeps his promises. I love how the book always highlights that the people in the stories believed God and God kept his promise. 

More on the twins... they are super big brothers. They are careful and loving towards Luke and still have never displayed signs of jealousy. Jacob especially is very caring towards Luke and will often ask, "Where's the little guy?" if Luke is still sleeping in the morning after the twins get up, or he'll say to Don when he gets home or when he's about to leave, "You need to see that little guy." Or "You need to give Lukey a kiss." He loves when Luke tries to touch him or smiles at him- he seriously just beams! 

In terms of our adoption, we're still waiting. We re-entered our adoption program in October after updating all of our paperwork. We're officially back on the list, so our call could come any day. There were many referrals the past couple of months, but none within our range. As crazy and chaotic as life often feels, we're still very excited about our next adoption. We can't wait to add a little girl to our family and we're both very excited about going back to Ethiopia, though this time is sure to be harder as we'll be leaving the three boys behind. 

We spent lots of time outside and at the park this fall, we enjoyed our family and friends over the holidays, and now we're hunkered down for another cold winter. We haven't left the house all week and most days have been filled with fort making, painting, reading, watching Go Diego, and a good amount of time pushing cars on the wood floor. 

Here are some pics from the past *several* months.