Friday, March 29, 2013

From noon to three the whole earth was dark.

(graycen caught a little cold early in the week and while resting she came to me and showed me this book she was making for her brothers. i loved it so much that i asked her if i could share it with you. she said yes.)

the easter story
by, graycen. age,6

 Jesus Died.

Jesus' mother cried at Jesus' feet. Jesus said to God, "Please forgive these people." God said ok.

on easter day Jesus rose from the dead. almost everybody was happy. Jesus went up to heaven. God will ask you if Jesus is in your heart. 

what will He find in your heart? hate, love, kind? God will find love in my heart. and do not forget that Jesus and God loves you always. 

Jesus is love. 
The end.

"From noon to three, the whole earth was dark. Around mid afternoon Jesus groaned out of the depths, crying loudly, "Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?" which means, "My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?" Matthew 27:45-46
The angel spoke to the women, "There is nothing to fear here. I know you are looking for Jesus, the One they nailed to the cross. He is not here. He was raised, just as he said. Come and look at the place where he was placed." Matthew 28:5-6
"Love never dies. Inspired speech will be over some day, praying in tongues will end, understanding will reach its limit. We know only a portion of the truth, and what we say about God is always incomplete. But when the Complete arrives, our incompletes will be cancelled." 1 Corinthians 13:8-10

He is risen. He is risen. He is risen.

Happy Easter.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Bunny Mask.

we made this mask yesterday, while sitting outside in the sun. it was that nice out yesterday! let's hear it for that! but now it seems i have a slight issue with this thing.

what's wrong with me that i can't stop torturing my children with this bunny mask? i can't stop!!!! i laugh, to tears i tell ya, when they hold it up to their face. and yet, every time i ask, they still do it for me. bless those little hearts of theirs!!!! 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


...this picture has nothing to do with anything other than i think it's hilarious. these days i can't get this kid to slow down for a picture, and when he does he lets me know he doesn't want to...

anyway, this week has been so wonderful. It's been quiet. not in a noise level sort of way, (my neighbors can attest to that) but in a spirit kind of way. For the greater part of the week we were without a car... no worries, car is fixed... so we were walking a lot. The weather has been chilly, but warm in the sun. we've been able to play outside for long periods getting covered in dirt and mud and picking the first of the flowers we see popping through the ground. Graycen has been home with us and until yesterday, when she started feeling sick, we have been working on her leadership, her God given strengths to be great examples to her brothers. I've been amazed at some of her patience with them, her sweet tender tone she uses to talk to them, and how she keeps their interests peaked in only a way a sibling can. i am thankful for her. so very thankful. 

our hearts are getting happily anxious to celebrate Easter. it's a most special day for me and my family. we celebrate birth, and rebirth, death and life and eternal life. on friday i have a special treat to put on here, something Graycen has been working on for the past two days that she told me i could share with you all. so come back and check for that!

this week, actually for the past month i have played this song over and over. have you hear it yet? it's so good. i really can not put into words how i felt the first time, the first 20 times, i heard this song. 


and this quote. "sometimes I need only to stand wherever i am to be blessed."- Mary Oliver

Monday, March 25, 2013


Sundays are the sweetest of days. It is most definitely a favorite for Jonathan and I where no matter what kind of schedule we are all on during the week, Sunday we are all on the same page. And that feels like a gift and a treasure. 

From the top: 
-getting ready for church.
-kids enthusiastic to tell us what they learned in kids church. nothing better!
-coming home
-playing outside for hours 
-coloring eggs
-making dinner


these days our littles are fighting and making up, disagreeing and learning to get along. It's a lot of training and shepherding our children and it can be tiresome and exhausting. Graycen is on Spring Break this week and i am just seeking God's full wisdom on how to show grace at every turn. There are many, many bumps along the way as these three strong willed children learn to live under our roof, with our family rules in place, and most importantly obedience shown to God and their parents. there is pushing and boundary testing and I just pray for patience. Dr. Time Keller says, "the worst thing for a strong willed child is a weak willed parent." So I press on! Should be an interesting week!!! 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Fabric Bunny Ears.

Yesterday, Lars helped me make these adorable fabric bunny ears, while brother Dune took a nap in my bed. If you want to make them too, here's what you'll need:

-pipe cleaners, 4 for each crown
-fabric, cut into strips. use long strips cut about an inch thick.
-hot glue gun

ready? go ahead and measure your child's head. make the crown out of two pipe cleaners. then you take the other two pipe cleaners and shape those into the two ears. don't worry about it getting a little bent while you wrap them, you can reshape it when you are finished. now the fun part! take your first strip of fabric and begin to wrap. go all the way around the circle until you are finished. you may need several strips depending on how you wrap it. now hot glue it so it does not become unraveled. then do each ear. I used two different fabrics so it would look more whimsical. for Graycen's I used two different pink patterned fabrics I had lying around. for Dune and Lars, I did the same thing but used blue fabrics, and to make them different from each other's I just switched them around. remember when you are done wrapping to hot glue the pieces so they do not unravel. 

each one of the bunny ears took me about 10 minutes to make. so for my three kids i was finished and cleaned up in about 30 minutes. 

And that's it! All of my kids love them! I plan on taking some Easter pictures of them all together wearing them. But for now, I asked Graycen if she wouldn't mind modeling them for you so you could see just how cute they really are. And if you think only girls would like this, then you should have seen Dune and Lars eating dinner with theirs on last night, refusing to take them off, and after dinner demonstrating how they chomp down on carrots as little Peter Rabbits. 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


                                      II brief weekly updates on our little family II

Reading: Anne Of Green Gables with Graycen. We just finished Jane Eyre which was entirely heart wrenching for my little girl. She took moments through out the book just to weep. I told her that it is doing what every good book should do; change you. I am excited to see what kind of impact Anne has on her, since that Anne Shirley never left me. 



Quoting: "God risked Himself on me. I will risk myself on you. And together, we will learn to love, and perhaps then, and only then, understand this gravity that drew Him, unto us." - Donald Miller

Learning: Looking into speech therapy for Dune and Lars. Lars was observed yesterday at Graycen's school and it seems his pronunciation is lacking with his f's and v's and b's. Dune has a slight stutter as well, so they said it's best we start intervention early.  It probably doesn't help that they have secret twin language. And with all due respect, I don't think the best teacher's on the planet will break through that bond. Nor do I think I want them to. 

Laughing: Dune and Lars have a new name for me- Momison. And every time they say it, which is about 30,000 times a day, I laugh. It still hasn't gotten old. 

Dreaming: Spring, gardens, farmer's markets, Vermont, the High Line, warm days and cool nights. Come to me now!

Loving: Eating dinner while the sun is still shining. It casts this orange glow on our meal and makes dinner time seem so slowed down. I love that. 

Soaking up: Last week's message at our church. you can listen to it here. Also, Easter is coming and you are welcome at our church. check it out

Recommendedpeanut butter bites! Yum! I'm on a peanut butter kick lately. 

And that's been our week so far! Enjoy the rest of yours. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A year ago he was so tiny.

I mean, really. would you look at that face? and then yesterday Lars is eating lunch and i'm just staring at him thinking, "you look all boy. where is the time going? and what have i been feeding you? and why are you so beautiful? and my gosh, i love you."

Monday, March 18, 2013

St. Patrick's Day, sort of.


                                //please pardon this changing blog as i work out some kinks.//

So yesterday completely snuck up on me. I didn't even realize it was St. Patrick's day till Sunday morning when getting ready for church, I signed onto google and there it was. I'm usually all about the planning. I love a reason to throw a party and get my kids involved, but this year. I don't know. this year it just feels like it's still February, and my mind is on Easter, and so there goes St. Patrick's Day- snuck in at the last minute. I was planning on making pesto that night anyway, so i just went with that... I made a big green salad, asparagus, and pasta with sauteed shrimp, and a huge bowl of pesto. So at least we ended the day with the green theme, and at dinner I talked in an obnoxious leprechan voice and when everyone finished I gave the kids the cupcakes I ran out and picked up earlier in the day. We had a fun dinner, and honestly, about three minutes of me talking in an Irish accent I am convinced my kids are thankful we didn't celebrate all day. MOM, MAKE IT STOP! bless them.

the best pesto recipe:

2 handfuls of basil
1/4 cup pine nuts
juice of one lemon
1-2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup olive oil
kosher salt and pepper to taste
splash of agave
pinch of red pepper flakes

put all the ingredients in food processor except the olive oil, and blend. slowly drizzle in olive oil till you have the right consistency. serve over pasta, use a dip with veggies, eat with eggs, make it a base for a pizza. unlimited opportunities for pesto love! pesto will last covered in fridge for up to 3 days. 

Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Few Things About Me.

Before I became a mother I was bar tending at an Irish Pub. 

Graycen was the first baby i ever held. No, I mean ever. I had never held a newborn and when I went to get her dressed for the first time and realized I had to bend her arms to get her outfit on, I began to cry because I thought I would break her. (true story.) 

I absolutely hate being scared. Scary movies, hearing my kids cry out over something, driving in the snow, something brushing up against my leg on a walk in the woods. Hate it. 

I really never envisioned myself as very care giving person. Before I was a wife and a mom, if someone would have asked I probably would have said I wouldn't be good at either. God still works on me to break me out of my shell, step out more, and now I pray for divine appointments where I can be caring and compassionate and not too busy with myself.

I was classically trained in singing and music theory for 8 yrs of my younger life. It's never left me. 

I have Italian blood, but apart from the name of this blog, I can only speak Italian in the way that I cook.

I was born in Vermont and blame all of my desires to own a farm on that fact alone.

If it wasn't for having cancer and my inability to ever become pregnant again, we would be trying to have another baby right now. 

My favorite place to be in the whole world is home. I wandered so much of my late teens and early 20's and now in my 30's have come to know the truth in there really being no place like home. 

I am an introvert. Aside from being able to have a great time at a dinner party, I will always be the first one to want to turn in. I loathe small talk. I'm not good at it and it makes me nervous. 

I am insecure about praying aloud in front of a small group, even a gathering in our home. but get me alone with Jesus, and I pour my heart out in buckets. 

My favorite desert is cobbler. Peach, berry, chocolate chip... just put the name cobbler on the end of it and I'm sure I'll love it. I'm a pie girl through and through and will pass on cake for a good pie crust any day. 

I met Jesus through a little talk with my sister when I was four years old. I loved my Creator with a crazy passion till around 15 years old, and then nothing. Like many, my teens and early 20's were filled with reckless thoughts and actions that left me feeling void and unworthy. I met with Jesus again in the Planned Parenthood where I found out I was pregnant with Graycen, in the emergency room pregnant with Dune and Lars when they gave me an ultimatum to continue with the pregnancy or not, when my marriage was hanging on by a thread, and when I was diagnosed with cancer. I am stubborn, but God is relentless. So now we walk hand in hand, and I have returned to my first love only to find that He had never let me go. 

~And all of this.... Is a result of all that. ~

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


// I'm going to be starting a series called, "Currently", where i cover briefly what's going on in our lives week by week.//


Listening to- Ben Howard's album, Every Kingdom. Old Pine has been on repeat all week. 

Reading- the latest issues of Kinfolk and Taproot, and the book Preparing him for the other Woman- A Mother's Guide to Raising Her Son to Love a Wife and Lead a Family, by Sheri Rose Shepherd 

Quoting- ||The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind the scenes with everyone else's highlight reel.||- Steve Furtick

Learning about- our soil, what would grow best, and building our own raised beds for our organic veggies. 

Laughing about- Graycen's gap in her teeth. we've definitely cracked some hillbilly jokes this past week. can't say she thinks it's funny though. oops

Dreaming about- Chickens! we need some chickens stat.

Loving- this extra hour of daylight and the transforming rhythm of our home as we enter in to Spring. 

Soaking up- "So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus." Romans 8:1. That means I have freedom in Christ and that wrecks me every time, in the best way possible.  

Recommended- this recipe. goodness, it's delicious. we made it a week ago and I am anxious to make them again. -also, one of my favorite food blogs-

off to play outside with the boys, get our hands a little dirty and our boots even muddier!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Scandalous Grace.

Our pastor was teaching last Sunday about Jesus' famous last words. He spoke of grace. the scandal with grace. He explained that the scandal is that we can not accept grace for being just that; grace. so we will burn ourselves out on religion, or /and try and prove how "good" we are. we think if we can only be -good enough- than somehow we will have made the exchange of Christ's blood for our sins more worthy. but this is in fact an insult to God, placing ourselves over Him, saying, "but look what i can offer you back, is it now that I make it more worthy?" but friend, we are worth it by simply being born into His great plan. that is the value. the price tag could not be any greater than His blood even if you never thought another bad thought in your life. but the truth is, we will go on thinking bad things here and there, we will continue to make a mess of things, or boast in our own self worth, or lose patience, or be cynical, judging, or full of pride. accept grace for just what it is, a free gift. because He loves you. and because we need it. again, and again.  

this morning while i was walking the dog, i noticed something happening to our ground. this past week everything has become soft and muddy outside, and i kept checking but had little hope. until today. i saw the tiniest beginnings of flowers popping up. the perennials. the ones a gardener will plant because there is the promise that they will come back every year. even after the difficult beating they take every winter.  i want to be the gardener that plants the perennials. i want to be more about the promise of the return and exchange than i do about anything else. i want to plant this kind of hope and sow it in each one of my children's lives. i want it to be woven into my marriage, so that when winter occurs, i can hold onto the promise of Spring. grace my friends, grace. it is free, it is a gift. and it is yours. take it and sow it. and watch it grow. every time. 
Galations 5: 22
IT’S QUIET. It’s early. My coffee is hot. The sky is still black. The world is still asleep. The day is coming.
In a few moments the day will arrive. It will roar down the track with the rising of the sun. The stillness of the dawn will be exchanged for the noise of the day. The calm of solitude will be replaced by the pounding pace of the human race. The refuge of the early morning will be invaded by decisions to be made and deadlines to be met.
For the next twelve hours I will be exposed to the day’s demands. It is now that I must make a choice. Because of Calvary, I’m free to choose. And so I choose.
I choose love . . .
No occasion justifies hatred; no injustice warrants bitterness. I choose love. Today I will love God and what God loves.
I choose joy . . .
I will invite my God to be the God of circumstance. I will refuse the temptation to be cynical . . . the tool of the lazy thinker. I will refuse to see people as anything less than human beings, created by God. I will refuse to see any problem as anything less than an opportunity to see God.
I choose peace . . .
I will live forgiven. I will forgive so that I may live.
I choose patience . . .
I will overlook the inconveniences of the world. Instead of cursing the one who takes my place, I’ll invite him to do so. Rather than complain that the wait is too long, I will thank God for a moment to pray. Instead of clinching my fist at new assignments, I will face them with joy and courage.
I choose kindness . . .
I will be kind to the poor, for they are alone. Kind to the rich, for they are afraid. And kind to the unkind, for such is how God has treated me.
I choose goodness . . .
I will go without a dollar before I take a dishonest one. I will be overlooked before I will boast. I will confess before I will accuse. I choose goodness.
I choose faithfulness . . .
Today I will keep my promises. My debtors will not regret their trust. My associates will not question my word. My wife will not question my love. And my children will never fear that their father will not come home.
I choose gentleness . . .
Nothing is won by force. I choose to be gentle. If I raise my voice may it be only in praise. If I clench my fist, may it be only in prayer. If I make a demand, may it be only of myself.
I choose self-control . . .
I am a spiritual being. After this body is dead, my spirit will soar. I refuse to let what will rot, rule the eternal. I choose self-control. I will be drunk only by joy. I will be impassioned only by my faith. I will be influenced only by God. I will be taught only by Christ. I choose self-control.
Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. To these I commit my day. If I succeed, I will give thanks. If I fail, I will seek his grace. And then, when this day is done, I will place my head on my pillow and rest.
From When God Whispers Your Name 
Copyright (Thomas Nelson, 1994) Max Lucado

(above source:found here)

Monday, March 11, 2013

Welcome back.

After some time away, I am back. I took a few months off from writing, got off a facebook, and stopped going on twitter. i needed some head clearing. i needed to figure out what this whole thing meant to me, what it's really about, ya know? i've been writing about our lives for so long. since Gray was just a little babe, i've disclosed all the tiring details it takes to be a mama to my children and what it's like for me to be raising kids in this crazy world. but the last two years i've felt tremendous growth //in my life, but also my relationship with Christ// and i needed to make sure that if i was ever going to come back to this blog, it was going to be with a purpose and plan in mind. so, here i am and after these past few months away, i feel i still have stuff to say. i still want to point to God, give Him the glory for the miraculous ways He's redeeming our lives. and if you'd be so kind, maybe you'll join me. 

why the new name? this bible verse, "And for you who fear my name, the Sun of righteousness will rise with healing in it's wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy, like calves let out to pasture." Malachi 4:2,happens to be one of my very favorites. but mostly, it's how i feel. in a physical way, we are drawn out to pasture, gardening, living off our land, foraging, appreciating nature, learning... 
and in an oh so captivate my heart, twirl me around by the hand, dip me as we dance kind of way, God has most certainly been relentless in wooing my heart with His healing of my health, marriage, and life. Under His great wings is where you will find me with a pen and paper, camera in hand, hoping to capture some of the beauty of it along the way. and this is where i will attempt to write a bit of it down. this is where i will try and translate what can almost not be explained. this is where i'll come back to remember. 
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