Friday, October 5, 2012

Three Weeks

Three weeks. Seems like such a short amount of time.....and yet it seems like an eternity. I'm 37 weeks pregnant and counting and very excited/anxious to enter into this next phase of life....the phase where I get to be called "a mommy of two". A mom of boys. :) It makes my heart glad....sooo glad

I always wanted 2 sons that would be "pals" and good friends throughout life. We're praying that Cole and Baby Gaffin will become best buds and lifelong friends. I was blessed with 5 sisters and my sweet brother and still count them as my best friends. What a blessing siblings are! Thank you, Lord! 

Before we found out we were pregnant with Cole, everyone said I'd be the one who would have all the girls. I'm a girly-girl at heart, so I guess it seemed to fit the assumption. I love flowers, pretty things, and have even been called "graceful" (haha....not sure about that one). I even thought we'd end up with mostly girls. :) But isn't it funny how God works? He knew just what we needed....and has blessed us with 2 sweet BOYS! Having a son has certainly brought out the "tougher" side of me...and it's so much fun to see the world anew through the eyes of a little guy....and little guy who is rambunctious, strong, curious, and all-around BOY. He is a delight! I can hardly wait to see what his little brother is like...and to enjoy all the fun baby stages anew with him. 

I've pondered a lot in this pregnancy about what a responsibility it is to raise boys in this day and age. It's quite a responsibility whether you are raising boys or girls.....but for some reason (and maybe it's only because we'll be raising boys and that's what I have my mind set on)....the stakes seem higher raising boys. Our culture seems to want to strip boys of their masculinity and their God-given roles as leaders and strong, confident men and it can seem quite scary at times. Raising children is no light issue. The desires of both Matthew's and my heart have been to raise up Godly men who will stand firm in their faith, persevere for their families, and live boldly for God. I know it's going to take a lot of prayer, discernment and guidance along the way, and we're ready to face the challenge. It's not going to be easy, but God never throws you into a situation that He won't enable you in, right? YES. Again, thank you, Lord!

Three weeks. I know it will probably fly by and I won't even remember how long it seemed to take. How my feet hurt at the end of each day and how I had a hard time bending over to help Cole pick up his toys. How I worked endlessly to make each day count in preparation for our sweet baby to come and how I said his name aloud to myself all the time....just to get used to it. 

How I waited for him.

Because soon, and very soon, he'll be here....and our lives will forever change. 

Bring it on! 


Thursday, February 23, 2012

In Bondage to "Stuff"?

"It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not 
be subject again to a yoke of slavery." Galatians 5:1

A couple of weeks ago Matthew was rummaging through our pantry trying to find a particular food item, only to turn around, with a look of defeat on his face and say "our pantry looks like a hoarder's!" (major insult to this neat-freak). I retrieved the item he had been looking for, but knew right then and there something had to be done....immediately. Cause you know what? He was totally right. There was a huge mound of baking ingredients in one corner that looked more like a big trash pile than something you'd want to bake a cake with, there were boxes of cereal "attacking" anyone who dared to open up the pantry door, and besides just a general lack of organization, there were way too many multiples of things....things I didn't realize I even had! 

It only took me about an hour to wipe down every shelf and re-evaluate and reorganize the pantry...and what a relief it was! Here are a few things that helped me get back on track:

*I relocated my baking "mound" to a nice galvanized pail and put it in our revolving corner cabinet for easy access. This way it was out of the pantry (creating more space) and directly under the baking area of our kitchen. Now when I want to bake something I can just pull out the pail instead of sifting through a pile in the pantry. 

*If I had multiples of things, which I did (I actually had 6 bags of brown sugar, some opened, some not and 3 containers of corn syrup! All of which I rarely use anyway!) I consolidated bags/containers as best as possible.

*If it was past the expiration was a goner!

*If I knew I probably wouldn't be using it was a goner!

*If it looked "iffy" was a goner!

*Related items were organized in the same area (canning goods with other cans, pastas & rice together, etc).

*Frequently used items were the most accessible (though everything is still very accessible).

As I was in the process of purging and cleaning, I asked myself these two questions that seemed to speed up the process..."is it adding to my life, or is it taking away from my life?" And if the answer is the latter, then how is it taking away from my life?

*My time?



I know it may sound a little too deep for a simple endeavor such as organizing the pantry, but lately I've really been thinking......what is the purpose of "stuff?" Whether it be foodstuffs, clothing, furniture, toys, home decor, etc etc....what is God's intended purpose for it all? Here in America we are blessed with so much, but at the same time, I know (at least for me) it can sometimes get a little out of hand. If I am spending twice as much time trying to find something just because I have too much, then I am in bondage to my things. If I am constantly cleaning my things, fixing my things, polishing my things, and caring for my things and have no room leftover for relationships with people and with my Lord, then I am in bondage to my things. If I let my things define me (whether to have too much or too little or not the latest and greatest), I am in bondage to my things. If I am making excuses after excuses for reasons why I can't do important things in life (like relationships!) because of my things, then I am in bondage to my things. If I am too protective of my things and am unwilling to let them be used in appropriate ways to bless others, then I am in bondage to my things. The list goes on. 

There is a time and place for everything.....and if there isn't...then something has to go.  For me, I want the things I do own to "add" to my life, and not take away from it. If we live in a small house for the rest of our lives, I want to be okay with that and "live within our means" and use our things to bless others. And should we live in a big house some day, I don't want that to be an excuse to just accumulate....accumulate. 

The answer to these questions will look differently for everyone....there are a million personalities out there and God want to use us all in  different ways. I am certainly not saying just because you've been blessed with much means you have to go and throw it all away. Only you know your limits. And I'm not saying all I have it all figured out either (quite the should see our garage!). But if you were to ask yourself these questions too, how would you answer them? Are you in bondage to your stuff? If anything it's certainly good food for thought...I know has been for me! 


Friday, February 10, 2012

A "New" Coffee Table

Hello my Friends! 

It's been several months since I've posted and to be quite honest, as good as it was to take a "break", I've been missing it a lot lately! I am! I hope you all had the merriest of Holidays and are feeling refreshed in this New Year. :)


The hunt for a new coffee table began about 7 months ago when Cole started pulling himself up on furniture and tottering around more. Our old coffee table was one that I found at garage sale for $5 (a steal!) and was rectangular with Queen Anne's legs. It has served us well for several years, but it's amazing how differently you look at things (furniture included) once you have a child! The corners of our coffee table all of a sudden appeared much sharper and with Cole running around more and more, it was time to say goodbye to my $5 find. And to make things that much easier, my style has evolved a little over the last couple of years. As if Cole wasn't motivation enough....that's always motivation! :) Haha! (You girls know what I mean). ;) 

So the hunt was on! 

I knew I wanted to meet this criteria when finding a table:

*Well built, would hold it's value
*Oval or rounded corners
*Shelf or drawer as an added bonus

I looked at a lot of pictures online to determine what I was looking for (to see if "it" was even out there!) and found one on this blog that matched what I had been looking for exactly. Now if I could only find it's sister! 
:) After doing some research I learned that it was an antique empire style library table-turned coffee table from the late 1800's/early1900's. I also found out, they can be very hard to find and a lot of times, very expensive. :( With the odds of finding one heavily stacked against me, I just did what any normal, bargain-hunting, determined person would do: kept on looking. Garage sales, estate sales, antique stores, flea markets, thrift stores, Salvation Army, Ebay, and of course...Craigslist. :) 

I wasn't a maniac I promise, but I had my "eye out" when I would be browsing around. Until last week!! Turns out she does have a sister! :) When I read the ad on Craigslist and saw she was listed for a mere $185, I knew she had to be mine. 

And here she is in her new home!

The owner said she was from late 1800's. Isn't she a beaut? She isn't perfect
by any means (has a few little chips),  but I love it. Maybe sometime down the road
when we're not investing in raising children...I'll invest in a full-blown restoration.
But for now, I'm okay with a few imperfections. ;)

She even has the "bonus drawer" I was hoping for. :) 

I love the gentle curve of the legs. Sometimes with antique pieces,
they can seem to be too overly detailed. I love that this piece has detail,
but is not overly fussy. It will work with most any style of room.

And here's our little Cole, perfectly at home around the table's rounded
I thought about putting a vase of flowers in the center for this little photo
shoot, but that's not very realistic cause let's face it, it would just end up on
the floor. Thus is life with little ones! :)

To me, finding this coffee table and having it meet my wants and our needs was an example to me that God really does care about the little things. And that He cares about me! 

Even if it is just a piece of imperfect old furniture. ;)

Have a beautiful day,


P.S. How has God been meeting your little
wants and needs?