Friday, June 29, 2012

kinda wondering if i'm doing it all right..

i'll be honest,
there's been a few rocky days around the knudsen home this summer.

with 5 females
3 of which are teenagers
one of which has been on her own for a year
one of which is heading rapidly into teenage years
& a mom who is trying desperately to keep up with everybody & everything
{a calm dog & a calm hubby--they're never in the hot seat}
we've had a few bumps in the road.

it's hard enough to let a friend down 
but when to realize we've dropped the ball with one of our children
it's a tough pill to swallow.
& our older children. wow. they can call us out mighty quickly.
maybe not so gently. but usually full of truth.

the other day one of my girls was very upset with me
because i'm "always on the phone or computer".
at first i thought, well yes. i am always on the phone or computer.
i have a job or two missy!
she of course was right. 
i am , let's go with often verses always, on my phone or computer.
this particular daughter's love language is quality time
& clearly, i haven't made spending time with just her a priority lately.

 funny thing?
just the night prior i laid in bed and thought
"what am i doing?"
i don't know how to run one business 
much less two.
i don't know how to best utilize my blog?
& monetize? haven't figured all that out yet.
i mean really, who knows all these things?
i've never been to a blog conference where some one tells me what i'm supposed to be doing
i've never taken a small business course
& i've never taken a photography class
( if any future client would like to cancel after that declaration...)

i feel like i redefined my little life last year
made some big girl decisions, made some financial investments
& then just stepped out there & did it.
while i LOVE what i'm doing
i'm finding the balance of working from home (during the summer especially)
to be quite the challenge.
i feel like i'm never quite "there" with everything.
the anxiety of seldom being caught up is a new feeling-
& rumor has it, that's just part of the daily deal.

trying to balance giving the appropriate necessary attention
to the lord
to my family
to my jobs
to my friendships
to my laundry
(add in exercise & the dog)
is a tough tight walk on a tightrope inwhich i'm not sure i'm doing such a great job

i need to supplement our income
& honestly, i love that i can help provide
(or atleast pay for my target & anthropologie runs)
i want to be a good steward of my talents
& i want to do things well.

i know with a small business these days
social networking really is a must.

i think of the friendships that have developed from this blog.
life long friendships that are priceless to me.
i would have never known about noonday
much less persued that awesome journey.
both of my business adventures have basically begun because facebook word of mouth or
connections via blogging.
the photography. the journaling. the blogging.
it's all a circle

in my minds eye i see it all, my little life, as a group of circles that overlap
my relationship with the lord
my family
my friendships
my work
& my blog.
they all overlap. they're all connected.
they're all very important to me. 
they all require time and commitment
and somedays i can do a few well
but i can't do them all well everyday.

it's very important to me to be real.
to be open.
to share not only the successes & joys in my life
but to admit when i struggle & when i've failed
& then to grow from it all.

it doesn't do me any good at the end of the day
if i've connected all day on instagram & facebook
 & answered all emails within 24 hours
one of my own is not feeling very loved or very important...

i just wanted to share today.
my real thoughts
from a real home
( a real dusty, filled with dog hair home)
where 6 people are still learning how to best love each other

& i also hope to encourage you too ~
be a good steward with your gifts & talents
let your light shine wherever you are
whether that's a toyfilled home today with a toddler or in a swank office downtown.
open your heart, be vulnerable & share your struggles with someone you trust
allow them to be close to you.
find someone to encourage & love on today.
do all that you do well & love your work
connect with your hubby & each of your babies in the way that makes them feel loved
bottom line,
love others well today.

 i'm sure gonna try....

Thursday, June 28, 2012

jackson wedding

congratulations to my beautiful friend

thank you for the honor of capturing some of the moments
from your very special day!
i wish ya'll a lifetime of blessings!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

thank you & a few answers too

first of all i want to thank ya'll for being such a big encouragement to madison.

talking about weight loss & health issues can be such a sensitive subject.
i've watched her struggle and be frustrated for the last several years. when we were walking the other day i just couldn't help but be so excited for her and the progress she's made. slowly, without anything wild or funky or extreme. just old school philosophy of eating less and exercising more.
 funny how it all comes back to that.
but thank you for loving on her!!

secondly a few of you had questions
from the key lime pie post....
the measuring cups were a gift from anthropologie a few years ago
& i'm not sure if they're still available 
however,   they have some mighty cute ones available now

a friend sent madison the super cute apron & recipe book last year.
both also from anthro--not sure if the apron is still available

the recipe book is rag & bone 
and super cute!

here's a couple of cutie aprons too...

when i was looking for these products for ya'll
i couldn't help but fall in love with these little guys!

the little mustard poka dot plates were a marshalls score as were the napkins from years ago.
the multi colored silverware? maybe oldies from target or tjmaxx? again, years ago.
so sorry.

the pie plate is from williams sonoma
whew....glad i could help ya'll with something!

heading out tonight with our gen salaam team!
we'll talk soon

matthew 25.37-40

‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, 
or thirsty and give you something to drink? 
 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in,
 or needing clothes and clothe you?   
When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
  “The King will reply,
 ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these
 brothers and sisters of mine,
 you did for me

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

a generation of peace

one of my favorite aspects of parenting is when, as the parent,
i have the opportunity to learn from and be inspired by my children.

savannah has been working as an intern at our church all summer, 
primarily with the middle school, which is awesome for caroline!
she's doing a fabulous job ( as per the youth pastor).

one of the outreach opportunities our church has is called generation salaam.
we load up several busses with students and adults
(sometimes upwards of 200 folks)
& head over to clarkston.
i've heard that clarkston is the most diverse square mile in the world.
many are refugees and below the poverty level

our adults work with the men and women there by teaching English classes and business skills. 
 the students spend time tutoring, playing with, and sharing with the  children.
mainly loving on them for a couple hours.
we seek relationships strong enough to be able to talk about our faith.

i've had the opportunity to be a part of gen salaam for years
yet seeing an instagram of my girls loving on these beautiful children
was the most powerful inspiration of all.

i've had several sessions falling on wednesday evenings but finally had the opportunity to go.
it's a mission trip 
that doesn't require a passport
& only 25 minutes down the highway.

it had to be 90 + degrees.
the girls wear long skirts or pants
most of them had on little to no makeup
their radiance as they hopped off the bus and began to love on those children
is one of the most beautiful things i've ever witnessed....

when i pulled up these images of savannah
( & some of emi when i wasn't there)
i'll be honest
seeing her do what she does & seeing her love for the lord
& for others in action
blew me away.
another moment when i have learned a priceless lesson 
& seen Jesus in one of my own...

 our noonday statement bracelet was a huge hit
with the little girls...

 the children do NOT want us to leave.
when we load the bus, a few of the adults have to stay off 
and watch because the little ones have been known to hang on to the bus...

our staff is currently working on an entire
dvd and informational packet for churches who desire to do 
something similar in their community.

i can hardly wait until tomorrow night to go again...

Jesus said, 
"Let the little children come to me, 
and do not hinder them,
 for the kingdom of heaven belongs
 to such as these."
matthew 19.14