it's true. i've been terribly behind with pretty much everything lately. this summer went by so quickly, with almost every weekend traveling or having people over. it's been a summer filled with incredible ups and painful downs.

let's just say the pits of my days have been unknown chronic shoulder and neck pain that continues to haunt my happy energy and overall health. i love to run. i miss running. i miss the energy and focus to exercise regularly. i miss my size 8 jeans. i miss sleeping a solid 8 hours without waking up to do PT stretches, or apply some stinky cream that brings me two minutes of relief, or popping pills that are completely worthless. i miss the days when my kids don't ask if i have a doctor appointment(s) that day. i miss my size 8 jeans (bears repeating). i miss pain-free days. 

pain is sad. pain is dark. pain changes people. pain sucks. 

there is hope. i have to believe! physical therapy has helped me retrain my body to use the right muscles. it's a slow process. and painful. physical therapy is hard work. one of the weekly treatments i did that really brought me substantial relief was traction.

here's a little selfie i took at one of my appointments. 

i love quotes, and ironically this one was the 'quote of the day' on my phone today - "we are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." ~oscar wilde 

But the real and lasting quote that has stuck with me through all this can be found in the book of psalms, chapter 73, verse 26. 

my flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

amen. ~xoox 




last weekend we celebrated our miss silvie's third birthday with close family and friends. the community grass park near our house was full of laughter and fun with a princess bouncy house, fishing station, photo props, and face painting. this was by far my favorite party to plan and enjoy! sincere loves and thanks to all our friends and my mama, whose help was amazing and unforgettable. ~xoox 



big sky vacation

a few weeks ago we vacationed in a cabin, on an island, at bull lake montana, with my parents, for a week. it was just what our family tv, no internet, no phone service! the disconnect was surreal and pleasantly calming. a big shout out to my parents for sharing this amazing experience with us. so...grab a cup of coffee and enjoy our story in photos. 

{the view from our cabin}

{silvie couldn't wait to play on the docks}

{hammock happy}

{one of brenner's wilderness challenges - plant science}

{the boat that knows our fishing tales} 

{heading out to find the big fish}

{the weather was warm, which made for ideal swimming breaks}

{all smiles here}

{and here}

{get this kid on a swim team}

{finding her balance on the party boat}


{my love}

{this girl and her silly seriousness} 

{love those freckles}

{my parents enjoying some quiet time} 


{breathtaking mornings on the lake}  

{ready to explore}

{kootenai swinging bridge - bren and i couldn't wait to cross!} 

{don't look down}

{kootenai falls}

{picking flowers for the dinner table}

{my parents still hold, awesome!}

{enjoying the scenery}


{the wilderness tile challenges i made for brenner - 1. shelter 2. plant science 3. navigation 4. cooking 5. fire safety 6. bird study 7. fishing 8. first aid}

{testing and contemplating}


{pep talk}



{another tile challenge earned}


{silvie's first fishing lesson} 


{silvie : 0 fish : 1 - but she had a blast}

{one of my favorite things we did together}

{navigation challenge}

(killer chandelier in our cabin}

{libby dam}




{she plays hard}

{grammy's brownies are the best}

{headlamp serious} 

{shelter challenge}