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Growing… {the farm}

We are slowly growing the farm over here!

We came with just this guy…who is still keeping us entertained as one of the indoor pets:)…

Then came Oreo who is the sweetest ever…

Next came the chickens!

And in just a week or so we welcome 2 baby goats! We visit them every few days and can’t wait to bring them home!!!
We are building a goat barn this weekend among our normal crazy and can’t wait to grow our little hobby farm!! My vote is for a protector for the goats next which leaves a donkey or llama in the running:) We shall see!!! So thankful for this sweet and fun season of stepping out together and learning a new way of simple yet crazy fun:)
Hope y’all have a sweet weekend!!







Breathing in Today (when they are little)

A grandmother–not by blood but heart–picked us…more than 7 years ago to pour into. She’d show up at my door with trinkets and little “happies” for the children. “They’ll be spoiled with these things,” I had thought. But year after year–season after season she came…giggling and sneaking up on my porch with treats and sneaking away.

Years passed. Our family grew…and so did the number of trinkets and gift bags she delivered.

Trials came…she beat cancer…still she came with her beautiful scarf tightly wrapped.

I slept through Lyme and could hardly keep up with the seasons myself one year…yet with each season I’d walk by the front door to see a rainbow of tissue peaking through the side windows…waiting for us to finally see them.

This grandmother of ours came for miles, year after year, with tissue filled bags.

Laughter and cheering I would hear in the foyer as little things catapulted out of the bags…some little things lasting but just a few days but bringing much joy none the less. Rich would walk in to see tissue paper and empty packages torn open and say, “I knooooow who stopped by today!”

A season of motherhood for me–I had no time to hardly catch up on groceries much less to mosey the aisles or the appreciation yet of how fast this time of having littles would pass.

It’s been over 7 years since this fairy of a grandmother was brought into our lives. Now well and full of energy…I finally have eyes opening to the passing of this make believe time, and this grandmother of theirs has rubbed off on me. I’m starting to really see why the fairy dust was worth the investment to her.

Now I’m in a season where I can really breath, be creative and have fun with my children. There WAS a season I was seriously surviving…so it was hard to really see–but God brought her to me because He knew I would get here and wish for time back to really play…with the impractical but oh so practical things filling those baskets at Easter and even Thanksgiving. God brought me Mama Judy in that season of surviving and learning to thrive–and to enjoy their squeals and what silly things brought them.

And without fail now–I think of her when I see trinkets like these.

And my tendency is still to shake my head and say to myself, “Oh that’s funny. But we need _____ and this decoder pen will last a day…”

But then—Then I run and grab a little shopping basket and fill it up…giggling to myself as I race to them…filling my little green basket with a few things to make them squeal. And I think, “I have GOT to tell her about this place! Oh my…she would flip over this hair dye comb for her grands or this rubberband tub boat for the boys in her world…”

She taught me to trust The Lord to bring others into my life to be my village—to love my children with me. She taught me to make time to play…even when you are tired–laundry and clean floors can wait. I started mommy hood being not only being  far too tired but even far too–strict…worrying that “things” would win more of their hearts. I let control (by me) and performance (expecting from them) take a leading role—so much so I found myself being a director instead of a passionate person in the play. Schedules…and “obey right away”…taking more of their hearts than pick-up-sticks ever could.

I thought God brought me this Mama Judy to love my children in a season of first years mommy fatigue…but her fairy dust, finger lasers and bunny baskets have reminded me how fast and fleeting this time is…and what our children really need in many times–is for us to simply get down and play and be…to just BE with them…enjoying their giggles and to PLAY. To mosey that silly aisle and get the light up yo-yo…not because it’s another thing to have….but it’s something to do together—and it’s going to be really cool to try in the closet with the lights off or among the fireflies.

These days are precious. Slowing down…climbing trees…and pulling these little treasures out I found yesterday–just to hear them squeal! Thank you Mama Judy for teaching me to be a silly, fun grandmother type momma and that the schedules, clean cupboards and even groceries and keeping things “together” can many times wait. Because the memories, connecting and conversations that happen during pick-up-sticks is truly priceless. I only hope some day I can remind other mommas the way you have reminded me…making time to play today…


When things break (Give Us Eyes to See)


Every single day–something will break.

Slow down. Ask for eyes to see.

Because it's not about how the world may crumble around you or that you are a failure and can't keep it together or that you aren't enough…or that nothing goes your way.


It's about choosing to see…changing perspective.

When things don't go as planned–EXPECTING to see something really amazing unfold from it…from small breaks and big breaks.

Just TODAY. I forgot my cell phone at home. 45 minutes from home when I realized it. Late for Parker's orthodontist fitting and with my phone as my navigation–LOST. I prayed for a sweet saint and help–and I walked in an office complex…and met a sister that reminded me of laughter and joy and we scrolled through her phone to find the way….a new friend that I will take a gift to later for her kindness…and He will work…because He always does.

Because I was late–the timing was perfect. They laughed on the phone when I told them how I was calling–and when I arrived the receptionist said, “You know your dear friend Melanie is about to be seen by the doc. Why don't you surprise her?” So I put my hands on her shoulders and with my best orthodontist voice said, “Let's lean you back and take a look in that big mouth of yours!” Laughter followed. And the biggest hug. I had no idea how much she needed that until she told me. (Love you Melanie!)

And on my way home–I thanked God for broken things.

Because in the broken-the Mender does miracles.

Every single day in the small and big broken–not going your way moments–breath…and thank Him for whatever He is up to.

#prespective #choosingtosee


Double Digits, farm fun, school & Labor Day!

Our firstborn of 5 kids hit a MAJOR milestone (for us anyway!!)…and hit the double digits 1-0!! We started a tradition that is going to be so fun to do with each of children leading up to turning 10. We decided 10 and all the ages that follow sound SO much bigger than the single digits! SO for the 3 nights leading up to the big 1-0…your LAST days of being a single digit–you are taken out ALL by yourself and one parent for an ALL kid activity!

Countdown to 10…the 3rd night before the big day–Richard took P-man to Bruster's ice cream and he got whatever he wanted! His choice was a waffle cone (the biggest there!) with chocolate!

Countdown to 10…the 2nd night before–he and I went on a school night to one of his all time favorite places that he wished we had visited more–Chuck E. Cheese! We had the place to ourselves running in at 8pm on a school night and it is by FAR one of my all time favorite memories with this kid now. We laughed until our sides hurt! We cheered each other on at the game Deal Or No Deal (Boy did we rack up the tickets there!!). We played football toss, basketball (as we screamed at every success!) and skee ball until our wrists were sore. It was so fun together!!!!! And so fun laughing…just us!

Almost 1-0

Skee ball champs

The ball landed in 50 tickets!

being 100% kids!

Countdown to 10…day 1…the NIGHT before he turned 10…God tooooootallt planned that one FOR us! The next day we were taking his 6 best buddies to Lake LanierWorld Waterpark. It just so happened that 2 of his buddies needed to spend the night that were going so they could go. They also happened to be the friends he met when he was just 1!!! Lifetime friends. These two guys were on our reasons NOT to move when we were trying to decide to stay here or go to TN where Rich's “real” office is. Rich took these boys out to their favorite place followed by more ice cream! And of course lots of swim fun here!

The boys!


And then. In a blink. My baby turned 10! We had a sitter for the littles and we rocked it at LanierWorld from sun up to sun down!

Best buddies

This was the one moment they actually were all still:)

I may have cried that night after tucking him in. Not sad tears. But thankful. Thankful that we have had these 10 years. With good health. With seeing him come to know Jesus. Watching him grow into a boy of integrity. And these friends. These are the ones God has hand picked to be the ones grow with him. The day truly couldn't have been more perfect and I was so thankful some how each of these precious boys could be there as this momma stood in the background…watching them play…and praying for another amazing 10 ahead.

Oh AUGUST! You slay this momma!!! With his birthday also comes the start of school. Another year schooling for us at home. Our first day of K for Frank and Isaac!

Kindergarten Rocks!

When in Rome...

And I doooooo get a break once a week when they do their electives at a local church alongside 900 homeschool kiddos! They take everything from cake pops to karate to geography.

And then. There's always life on the farm. Had to stop at the Feed and Seed to get chicken feed. Frank convinced me every farmer needs a hat and overalls! Oh my heart!

My little cowboy

In other news…


1. Zeke got his head stuck in staircase railing. A must see Instagram video on my Instagram andrea.p.young shows my not so smart self sticking my head in to widen the rail for him. Um. Not my brightest moment but I was desperate to get his head out.

2. Our Created for Care team was invited to meet with Chick-fil-a to share about the ministry for adoption and foster mommas! We had such fun and there are some sweet things ahead with our ministry and Winshape!

3. With 4 boys and 1 girl–our girl convinced the boys to play prom with her…but she needed another couple for the double date. These two = HILaRIous!
4. And last but not least…LABOR DAY WEEKEND! We loooove spending time with this sweet singles community that Rich's best friend leads a house church for. They invited us on their weekend retreat and blessed our socks off with around the clock caring for our kids! Soooo fun!

We have been friends with these folks for 15+ years so it was a sweet weekend with friends who are like family!!!

And that wraps up August and now comes September! This week Loo starts back to ballet AND tomorrow is Zeke's FIRST day of preschool!!!!!!!

Have a sweet week!





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