A day in the life of…

So I decided to do some picture journaling to show the different facets of my life. I am a Believer, a Wife, a mom of 3 under three a Minister and the list goes on. Don’t get my wrong I don’t think that droves of people are biting their nails waiting to see what I fed my children today, but I always get questions about how in the world I manage to raise these kids work full time support my husband and write on the side with a smile on my face. So I figured I would chronicle the reality of a day in my life. Granted I don’t think it makes for life changing journalism but I do have some pretty cute kids and some life hacks you may find helpful soooooo drum roll please here we go… enjoy

6:00am- the hubs is getting ready for work I’m off today since I worked Saturday and Sunday (#ministrylife) I am faced with the choice to send the kids to pre school or keep them with me to redeem some quality time that I’ve spent chasing down ministry partners to give them commemorative pens.

The verdict is in I’m keeping all three today!!!! So we feast on cookies bananas and peanut butter in my queen sized bed and watch far too many episodes of Ninjago!

This is Lily 2 years old 20 pounds and a force of nature! This pic pretty much sums up the tude she’s been giving me all morning.

Meet Jude 3 years old and he thinks he is a Sithlord he walked around like this saying “look mommy I’m a Star Wars” this boy is silly and brilliant and refused to follow directions!

Ok it’s about 11:00 I’m feeling pretty good about myself by now. Why not start dinner #crockpotlife as a busy mom family 5 on a budget I cook  a lot to save money and I enjoy it. But I’m not going to lie gone are the days of roasting a rack of lamb with mint jelly all while wearing pearls. I do have my go to meals; I try to make them all quick or fix and forget so my crock pot gets a lot of mileage. Today I was super lazy about it and didn’t want to make gravy which I usually pour over he chuck roast while in the slow cooker. I crossed my fingers and hoped for the best

Dishes done (check) stare at the rest of the house and pretend I’m going to clean it (check) Note to self why are there so many toys! Like way too many!

My kids are not veggie eaters so I’m always looking for ways to hide them in their food. I made this homemade tomato soup a week or so ago with lots of pureed carrots. I make it in bulk, pre seasoned with onions and portion it out in freezer bags. I throw it in my spaghetti for added veggies or defrost it for the kids’ lunch like I did today. I’ve got lots of little baggies of what nots in the freezer and none of them are labeled so actually putting this practice to good use is like a fun game of hide and go seek! It’s like my Pinterest side meets the real me and we all just close our eyes and hope for the best!!!! 

Enter stage left my newest addition Joey! He’s adorable and cuddly and honestly I am self conscious about how much time he spends in this rocker. Managing everything else in this life I find myself wondering if I’m short changing the youngest I only hope I don’t mess him up and that my friends are real mommy thoughts unscripted. (Yes my carpet is terribly stained! Between potty training spot cleaning, spilled apple juice and water bottles I think I may have given up)

Ahhh Mommy’s gotta eat too!!! I made myself a grilled cheese on the side figured the kids had enough carbs that day. Lol really I had enough carbs too but something special just for me gives me moments to hold onto where I feel like an adult. (Yes that’s a kid’s spoon don’t judge me)

I try to take time to enjoy the little things. My soon started meticulously staking his toys in the dinning room I would typically tell him to stop but both he and Lily were captivated by their new task. (New rule never interrupt a captivated toddler) this random pile of things including my shoe and a war tank my son called a birthday present for me! He was so proud so I took the bait and paused to enjoy him a bit.

One huge poopie 2 baths and three breast feedings later we find ourselves on an adventure to the doctor. All three kids and myself have been suffering the wrath of winter colds. After doing everything I’ve been told to do I figured I better just take them in to the doc to be sure. I’m worried they will see this mom of three as a newbie and wonder why I brought them in for a viral cold. Why do I even care about their opinions anyway (By the way #teampetty came out during our drive, this is a pic of a new QT which was built recently my husband and I argued about if the new gas station was a QT he said no I said yes I win! What what lol real life marriage goals include rubbing things in your spouse’s face)

At the doc with the three littles is it just me or does everyone stare at us wherever we go. Maybe I’m just making it up out people look at me with half pity and half elation. BTW this was before they got the flu shoot, notice the smiles 🙂

Cup number 3 of coffee today this time in ice form. Honestly I didn’t feel like I would make the drive home the exhaustion is slowly encapsulating me.

Overall the kids do a pretty good job while I’m out. This is not a coincidence but it’s the result of intense prep. First we have a come to Jesus meeting in the car before we get out about how they will be on their best behavior and not embarrass me. I come fully stocked with medium sized toys not small ones! I repeat not small ones! They will be every where. And most importantly I try to communicate with them about where we are going and what will happen next. A lot of acting out by toddlers is caused by not being able to control their environment every moment is filled with surprises and new discoveries so I try to cut down on over stimulation by over communicating. In this case I kept going over why they were getting flu shots what would happen 1st 2nd and 3rd and it worked like a charm!

3 sick kids 2 shots and 2.5 hours later we shut it down! Parking lot of the doctor’s office is empty!

7:30 a little late for dinner time guess the lazy gravy I made was a hit as you can see clean plates. Although we did bribe Jude to eat his food with the promise of a cookie they say you’re not supposed to do that… I say who ever made this rule is clearly not trying to feed a toddler on a regular basis

My hubs makes bomb homemade cookies it’s a simple joy and probably one of the reasons I have yet to loose the baby weight! lol I grab two after dinner I have now lost count of how many I’ve had I’m headed to sit down and relax for one of the first times in hours while the hubs preps the kids for bed and folds laundry.

Getting in some time with the lord is tough with three littles but a pre bed praise break with the kids gets my focus back on Christ! This is Jude praising as we watch CCM videos on YouTube.

Screen shot of article I scrolled through during my sit down break. This one caught my eye because I’m always wondering if my relentless coffee addiction is ruining my liver! Turns out according to this article which may or may not be a reasonable source, it’s not!!!! What what via le cafe!

Bae makes the kids fly before bed!

Hubs brushes their teeth I nurse the baby, he gets them in their pjs, we pray we sing or goodnight song, and Tuck them in bed.

The Hubs and I go from kissing each other tickling and whispering about the night time events to transpire to being a little bitter at each other because I thought he insulted my cleaning (which by the way I haven’t been doing very well-but hey don’t you dare say something about it lol) he says he wasn’t. We are still a little distant he goes to bed I plop down besides him and nurse to the office a moment of peace and quite in the dark after a busy day


To my toddler concerning your utter lack of earthly possessions

Dear toddler you seem to have some confusion about your earthly estate

So I’ve written this poem for you so you won’t make a mistake

You think you own the air, the grass and the rocks

You think you own my nose, my clothes and my socks

You think you own your sister, and the entire Aldi Store

If I ask you to give anything back you act like it’s a chore

I pick up the phone to text and you scream MINE

I just want to tell you, you own nothing cus you don’t have a dime.

The end

(Feel free to read this to your toddler as their bed time story 🙂 hope it works for you) mine


Meet my 90 something year old neighbor, Jewel

My husband and I just moved to a more “neighborhoody” small town. We are coming from an apartment complex closer to the city where everyone comes and goes without even a nod of the head. Our little town is full of neighbors who stop and say “howdy” like for real one older gentleman used that term while we were walking with our kids.  There are real live ice cream trucks driving by in the evenings, kids riding their bikes, and cute little store fronts and eateries down the street. As far as I am concerned this is as close to living in Stars Hollow as we can get and that makes me happy.

One of our goals for our new abode is to be more neighborhoody towards our neighbors. So far this has proved difficult, due to the fact that we have just completed one month at this residence and we have had a car accident, stomach flu, house guest, a business trip and more. However over this holiday weekend I seized the moment to do some much needed yard work. While cleaning up Mrs. Jewel made her way over to introduce herself.

Her white hair was properly tied up into a scarf which made me feel a little bit less self-conscience because I had to hog tie my robust mane into a bandanna in order to ward off spiders and what not. She wore a purple floral dress with a little fanny pac positioned on her hip. I noticed she was wearing make up, at least lip stick. The red hue had been drawn on out of the lines a little bit as if my toddler had done it. She wore those gigantic puffy sneakers you find in drug stores that Velcro. They were nude color.

Now I am not 100% sure of Mrs. Jewel’s age but she told me that she was later celebrating her son’s 70th birthday and her eldest son is 73. I tell you what, if you live to see your children in their 70’s you have lived quite a full life. I only spent a short time with her but, within our 15 min chat she gave enough insight for me to fill a whole blog or two.

I am captivated by old people I think. She said little but exuded wisdom. Jewel began to tell me about the huge oak tree, whose shade was offering us some solace from the Texas heat. It was so large I couldn’t imagine a day where it had to be nurtured and watered by anyone. It turns out her neighbor planted that tree almost 70 years ago. For some reason her neighbor didn’t have time to care for it so she took it upon herself. She told me she adopted that tree. She raised it up and the tree is almost as old as her boys, now old men themselves. This struck me as enduring. Who cares to raise up a tree you do not plant? Here we are 70 years later and what was once small and frail towers over her, now small and frail. She was proud of that tree.

Mrs. Jewel then told me a history of everyone on the street. She told me about their comings and goings and how many children they have and how the children are now grown. She mentioned, several times that people are too busy these days for much of anything. Too busy for their neighbors, too busy for their children, too busy to care for a tree. For one reason or another the notion of business and her sorrowful reflection on it, has eaten away at me ever since. Why in the world have we become so busy as a culture? What do we busy ourselves with?

She told me about her quilting business, which she said was the reason she hadn’t taken the initiative to introduce herself to me sooner. Here she is old enough to have children in their 70s, in her puffy drug store shoes, and she is quilting. She was busy working on back orders. They say a busy life, is a blessed life. So often we hurry to finish work and she delights in it. I just realized as a type, this is an oxymoron, how can one relish in an a life that  isn’t busy, but also praise a life of business?

While I may not agree with Jewel’s fashion sense, she cared about her appearance. I have observed with many older people that they care about what they look like, their hair, their homes, their yards. I am sure that the mentality is wrought with the trouble of keeping up appearances but there is an art to caring about the little things that may be lost on us young folk. Why do we devalue our property, and have no pride attached to the homes we have worked so hard for? Why don’t we try to put our best foot forward. I see this as a typical case of over correction. While her generation may have been a little too concerned about white washed fences and mint juleps, the generations after her (I think there is like a 4 degree separation between us) have allowed lethargy to creep into every aspect of our lives to combat this. Lethargy I think is sold to you as freedom from expectations, then something drastic happens. You began to expect less and less of yourself. Maybe we have all suffered because of this.

Jewel mention quite a few times which ladies of the house worked and those who didn’t work on the street. This bothered me as a working mom. Can I cut the mustard, are my children suffering? I wonder what she has observed as she has watched these families over the years.

While not pertinent to the story, Mrs. Jewel happens to be white and I happen to be black. She has been at this residence for 70 years, which means when they cleared the land to put in the new development the entire town was populated by whites just like herself. Over time this area has notoriously become more diversified setting off a large migration of white families to the north. I often wonder about this time. As racially tense as America seems to be in these last couple of years, I could only imagine what she has seen through those eyes. She always seems to be watching. As I drive through these old streets I think fondly on people like Jewel who wouldn’t budge. I don’t know if she stayed because she accepted her diverse neighbors or if she stayed out of  sure will power to not be moved. Either way she seems to have made her peace with it now. Regardless of her situation her longevity in that place is appealing to me.

We ended this conversation by exchanging numbers. The next day she came by to give me a cake. I look forward to more reflections with my 90 something year old neighbor. old-woman-cartoon-clip-art-860861


My perfectly, imperfect 31st Birthday!

Today is the day folks! I am 31. Its an interesting thing turning 31, at 30 the novelty of true adulthood was fresh and exhilarating. At 31 the additional year feels more like a permanent seal proving that I have traveled over yonder lol! Don’t get me wrong I am not afraid to age! I just still feel like a child playing dress up some times. I have a husband, now a house, two kids, two cars and bills… when did that happen 🙂

My day so far is not going as smoothly as I expected. Last night I volunteered in the toddler room at my church for VBS! OMG the horror! My kid is two, is he like that? If so God Bless the sweet childcare workers who run around with him, I need to bring them cookies or something. At one point a small child with terrible eczema kept asking me to scratch his sores. I felt terrible for him, but man, that takes a mother’s love.

Needless to say I returned home hot, sweaty, and exhausted.

Today I woke up to my baby girl screaming and she proceeded to scream until we left the door an hour later.

My son, who made his way to our bed last night, kept trying to poke my eye out (literally) as I was breast feeding because he thinks its funny. He then proceeded to drop a large load.

I boiled and egg for him, sat him in his chair so I could get some other things done. I turned my head and he had thrown all of the eggs on the ground, not at all at once in one location, but strategically little egg bit by little egg bit. I left it there…

Our diaper Genie that saves us from breathing in poop fumes is out of bags so the garbage is full of these little surprises. Redemption is here because its garbage day. But on a particularly hot Texas day they forgot the trash bags out front. This is going to get interesting lol!

Jude refused to leave his toy car at home and Lily kept crying, I was running late so I proceeded to ditch the idea of coffee and eggs for myself and ran out the door.

On the way to drop the kids off in two different locations my mind is running about typing up loose end for our lease termination as they may be trying to scam us out of a deposit (don’t worry I will win!). My husband was side swiped in a hit and run a couple of days ago. He is great but the car needs some care. I have yet to call our insurance company. And we don’t have the money.

I was 3, yes 3, minutes late to pick up my daughter yesterday and was charged 15 dollars. I had planned to bring cash this afternoon but apparently I was already extended grace and it was due immediately,  So off to the bank I go already late to work. My son is in the back seat saying “OH NO” because he cannot get his sock off lol.

I look down at my toes……. (Ladies can you relate lol) I wanted to feel cute on this 31st B day of mine, so I threw on some sandals, but my feet are not sandal ready 🙂 oh well. I changed my outfit twice this morning. While Jude was throwing eggs I was trying to see if I can even fit back into my intermediate fat pants yet. (I can’t )

So I am here now and its my Birthday! I’m not mad, a little stressed out, but still grateful. There are some things I could be handling better, some hurdles to leap over, mountains to climb and all of that stuff. I have a gym and a trainer in the building I work in yet I don’t go.

This didn’t strike me as an ideal Birthday Morning, but when my boss asked me if I had any 31 year old wisdom I told him, “I am perfectly Imperfect”  and supper blessed!


On raising multiracial kids


If you would have asked me 20 years ago what I envisioned my child would look like I would probably think…yeah he will look like me. You know the same amber brown skin, dark eyes and negro hair :).

Now at almost 30 with a 9 month old I love more than life itself I find myself walking in a restaurant watching the eyes and my subconscious thinks…They think he isn’t yours!

I once had someone look at Jude’s picture, then back at me, then back at Jude and ask “Who is the baby.”

Or even while holding him people asking me if he is mine….

I want to shout to the world “He is all Mine! He sprung forth from my womb and I still have the baby fat to prove it” lol

So I find myself thinking what does it mean to have a child who doesn’t share my sun kissed hue? How do I raise him to be proud of everything he is, proud to be a man of color, and know that in our so called post racial world he is a Black Man and he has to know and understand what comes along with it.

So here’s the run down on my son’s racial and cultural milieu: I am black, I have black mom, I have a black dad, but of course like any other family we have a lineage that comes from Africa, Scotland, England, Native American, Asian and the West Indies. All my bothers and sisters have “light eyes” (except for me that that is for another blog), I am often told that I am mixed because of my long thick hair, I have been asked countless times if I am part Asian, a comment that I just cannot wrap my head around. (Did I mention I’m Black… Like…just regular Black)

Ok and here is the fun part culturally I have been a mixed bag that continues to shape who I am today. I am fluent and Spanish I lived in various countries, met my husband in Puerto Rico and I am a self proclaimed Bla-tina. I have spent some time in Asia and my nephew and his family who are now like family to me are Vietnamese. (Its pretty cool, as a black girl, to walk int Lee Pho’s Sandwhich Shop Downtown Cincinnati check it out! and be treated like family and get the strange looks from all the usually customers hehe) So I grew up with predominately Jewish friends (I couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t going to temple in 3rd grade!) And now my husband and I fellowship with a group of Christian’s mostly comprised of South East Asians. (I asked and I was told that I can get my Indian card 🙂

And the fun doesn’t stop there! My husband is half Italian and half black, but every where he goes people think he is Mexican. He was adopted into a German and Romanian family and was raised in the Romanian orthodox church. My husband while bearing black genetics is culturally the furthest from it that I have ever seen. ( Before he met me he did not know what a YAM was… Yes people a YAM).

Is anybody else’s head spinning? So what will life for my son be like who is surrounded by cultural diversity and looks Hispanic but is more black than anything else?

I was once told that racism only persist to exist because people like me keep talking about it but I beg to differ. I think it still exist because when I was in the 4th grade a little white girl called me a derogatory term and her mom apologized to me for it as if she didn’t learn it from her.  I think it still exist because when I was 20 years old in college I was called the N word and spit at from a car. I think it still exist because just the other day my sister and I saw a white couple clutch their belongings and draw to the other side of the road when a young black boy crossed their path.

A friend recently told me “We will all soon be a pleasant shade of beige”

Will there be any rules I have to tell my little beige baby whom I love dearly? Will he ever be degraded as I have been?

The fact is I do not want people to not see color… I want Jude to see color and celebrate it. I want him to see his cultural background and enjoy the fact that diversity is a revelation of a God who has STYLE!

I don’t know all the answers but the one thing I will tell my little one  is this… Love God and Love Others the fullness of the law is fulfilled in these.