Babe of my Heart » Our Family's Journey

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Donkey Ho-te {our daily farm funny}

I can’t make this stuff up:) A funny for your day…phone all to vet…

Me: Um–yes ma’am–we’d love to have our donkey…fixed…I mean castrated…I mean gelded.

(Disclaimer: Y’all–I’m so uncomfortable with this farm animal talk that it’s funny!)

Vet: (snickering at my discomfort): Well–we can do that! Okay–let’s get some details in our system–does your donkey…have a name?

Me: Why yes he does! (laughing) I’m almost embarrassed to say. It’s Don Quixote. Or Donkey Ho-te. However you like to say it or spell it…it’s fine. Funny right?

Vet: Um. I don’t understand. Can you just spell it please?

Me: DON QUIXOTE!!! You remember–it’s classic literature…Spanish literature that you learned in school…get it? Don Quixote!!!! ????

Vet: Um–I don’t know what you are talking about. Please just spell it.


My funny TOTALLY bombed.

Y’all. It’s funny!!!

Know your classic literature. Y’all–my barn school will soon be open for all y’all;).


The Best Homeschool Day…EVER

Today might very well go down in history as our most favorite homeschool day ever. MIND YOU…I was cross-eyed half of it as it’s never easy (kudos to you homeschool mommas who are always on top of it–but this mom is NOT and for me homeschooling can be painful refinement but so stinkin’ sweet all packaged in one!) I must document though our most grand day in a very long time:

1. I high vaulted over a fence when donkey decided he didn’t want to be brushed and thought he was a bull (sorry–no pictures of that one…but Greg Pierce and Debra Pierce have both seen it before–and I should have been in track–minus the back flop). If you like essential oils–might I recommend Arctic Ice for your muscle pains and injuries. Just donkey…I know he may not look intimidating–but he nips and he isn’t scared to nudge you until he gets his way.

IMG_5217This is more like it;)…I’ll try to get a pic of him bucking and showing his teeth off;)



2. Parker used his Swiss army knife cut the end of an excellent vine in the woods (a few years ago it was the tip of his thumb–but today it was a vine!)–making another subject for our school as we spent HOURS swinging on it!–Still debating on subject names of this…but trust me–it requires skillz with a big Z;). If you are a friend on Instagram–I humbled myself and posted the video of my turn. NOT pretty. BUT hilarious.

Loo bear makes it look easy and even graceful.


I on the other hand–like to show you what it’s really like…

Not My Proudest Moment Short Clip

3. Spark, the long lost gerbil, decided his days of rebellion were over–and walked up to the front door and returned home (children’s book and potential move to follow). We rejoiced at the prodigal gerbil and whatever happened for the last 5 weeks in the outdoors…freezing lows last week…the dog outside most days—and who knows what else–he survived and literally was waited on our front porch for us…exactly how we prayed for his return 5 weeks ago when I challenge the kids to pray big! The kids want to write a book about his 5 week adventure now…we saw him almost every day–but catching him was impossible–until today–he was ready to come home I guess:)


4. We transformed the homeschool room into a workshop–because we have a jolly old reader coming to our homeschool on Friday and we want him to feel at home;). And we have a handful of girls who will be transformed into Sugarplum Fairies as we celebrate Loo turning 9–who will need to twirl in their PJs in Santa’s workshop too;). It took a group effort to make transform the school room into Santa’s workshop…but we did it:).


THIS ALL in a school day! Homeschooling is by far the hardest job I’ve ever had-but I’m savoring up these memories we are making together! So thankful. And one day I’m gonna really, really miss this!

Stay well. Have fun. And live each moment to the fullest…life is truly the most grand adventure!

We have a busy, busy weekend ahead with the boys starting basketball season and Loo bear in 3 more Nutcracker shows! She has totally shined and played her role well! We couldn’t be more proud of our party child!Here’s a pic from one of last weekend’s shows! No cameras are aloud during the show–but I snagged her while volunteering as she was running behind the scenes! Loo rocked the wig and Victorian clothing don’t ya think;)?!





The night you were born {it’s a…GIRL!}

My sweet girl.

Oh my. I always do this. I stay up until the clock strikes midnight–so I can go up to your room…look at my princess sleeping…and be the first to whisper happy birthday. It makes me sleep better:). And I just love remembering–so I have to write it down for you.

I will never forget the night you were born. I thought you would complete our family–and we’d never grow again:). Little did I know there would be THREE more brothers to follow you. And you already had a big brother chomping at the BIT to meet you!! He was just 14 months old when you were born and that little stinker with his year long colic–he had JUST started sleeping through the night. And then…you came.

We didn’t find out whether you were a boy or a girl. We wanted it to be a surprise–but deep down…I confess…my heart longed for a princess. (Now I have to laugh that we have 4 boys–and you are still the princess! We would be lost without you!

Okay–*I* would be lost without you! And I guessed you’d be a tomboy having a brother just 14 months ahead and many to follow…but nope–100% princess you are! I’d love you no matter what personality you’d have of course…but I have to say I love picking out different shades of pinks with you and using your ballerina practices as my little get away:). Watching you dance takes my breath away.

Oh the night you were born…

You decided to come in the middle of the night. So we called the our best friends and neighbors to come over and sleep at our house while Parker slept–because I didn’t want to wake him and I knew you might not wait until the morning either. We rushed to the hospital–but as soon as we checked in–you decided you’d rather sleep. So we slept for a bit too. Aunt April came–she’s exactly 14 months older than me too–and she was there bright and early with treats and good reads to help me pass the time.

The doctor came in and told Richard he really should go get something to eat because he’d need his energy as it looked like it’d be a long day and quite awhile until you decided to come again. I begged to differ…and knew you were coming much sooner–I could just sense it. (And boy was I right!)

Nana and Papa came pretty early from Alabama, and they had mischievous looks on their faces–and momma knows how to read them…and I knew something was wrong.

Our sweet friend keeping Parker had gotten him out of his crib and had fallen with him down our flight of stairs….but everyone had promised not to let me know until after delivery. ONLY a momma senses these things and squeezed the information out of your Nana and Papa.

Your brother was in the ER at Children’s in the hospital next door–and since the doc said it’d be awhile–I decided I’d go to the ER to check on my other baby. Only the nurses said I needed to stay put. SO–I convinced Papa and Nana to forgo being in the waiting room while you were born and instead–to go be with Parker in the ER in the hospital next door while I waited for you to arrive. Oh this momma’s heart was so torn!! I couldn’t wait for you to come–but I was so worried about your brother. Thankfully he just had deep bruises on his legs and that was the reason he wasn’t walking. No breaks! BUT I’d definitely have my hands full the first week you were home!

Your daddy had gone to the cafeteria to eat–and he called a buddy (Watson Barker) to come meet him for an early lunch. It’s right then that I KNEW you were coming. I told your Aunt April you were coming, and she reminded me the doc said it’s be 7-8 HOURS. I asked her if she’d like to take a peak because I was CERTAIN you were coming–and she laughed and grabbed a nurse;).

Your momma was RIGHT! According to the nurses, you were coming!!

Aunt April panicked! The nurses and doc started suiting up robes and gloves. And I squealed that your daddy was doing WHAT??? Eating in the cafeteria!!! YES he needed his energy doc–but he also needed to be right HERE right NOW!!

I called him on his cell…and he sent me to VOICEMAIL.

I called him a 2nd time…and he sent me to VOICEMAIL…again!

I called him a 3rd time…and what do you know–VOICEMAIL a 3rd time!

Later I would ask him what on EARTH was he thinking sending his laboring wife to voicemail and he’d say, “I thought you were just going to beg me for a sweet tea and I was eating with Watson and knew you could only have ice.” UM. Not a smart move RICHARD! (You know he’ll never hear the end of this one!)

Aunt April called him on HER cell phone and he knew something must be happening–and she told him I was in full-blown labor and they were asking me to push with or without him. So he came running. ONLY…he got on the elevator with a sweet old man that pushed 10 buttons! Serves him right! hahah!!

By the time Richard ran in the room, you were already almost here–but thankfully he did run in the room just in time for the most perfect baby girl to enter the world! He was so out of sorts for almost missing the birth that he forgot to tell me whether you were a boy or a girl and he just stood there dumbfounded and the DOCTOR had to help him out!! I had to ask TWICE, “What is the baby!?” and finally I heard the words, “It’s a baby girl” after the doc coached the shocked and out of breath daddy what to say.

My heart melted.


I know you might get tired of hearing that you are my only, baby girl.

I know you might get tired of listening to me fret and ask you to be careful when you do this or that.

But you must know it’s only because I love you to pieces–and you are my baby girl.

You were and are absolutely perfect to us and for us.

Nine years ago today…you changed our lives forever…


And daddy sir…I love you…and you are forgiven…(oh my he was such a BABY at just 27 years old!!!)


And off we went…to start our life as a family of 4…with our little girl…


And in just a few days Parker was just fine walking again–and he couldn’t WAIT to play with you…


9 years.

It has gone by in a BLINK.

And I realize now–that i just have 9 more with you until you leave for college.

Half way there.

What a joy it is to get to be your mommy.

It’s midnight! I must run upstairs to be the first to tell you!!

Happy birthday to our most precious baby girl!



When You Wish It Was Your Turn {He Cares for You}

I confess.

Some days–alright–MANY days…I feel served OUT.

But then I rest. He restores. And I get back up and serve again.

I find myself in a season of caring my children–and caring for many others in between. My heart longs to be in community–so to do so…I find myself often creating it. Inviting many over. And it is sweet and good.

I find myself wanting deep friendships. I hear a need…of a dear friend…so I offer. And I serve. The friendship deepens in the service. And it is sweet.

I used to have a photography business–but I stopped to pour into my children because the editing and order delivery took so much of my family time–yet I find myself now gifting more sessions than I ever took when in business each week.  I hear whispers of BOUNDARIES…and taking care of myself…and saying NO–and how it’s okay to say NO or not offer–yet some times the offering hits my heart–and obedience comes before selfishness. I hear another boundaries whispering…I BROUGHT YOU HERE TO SERVE…AND YOU ASKED–TO BE MORE LIKE ME.

But I’m tired Lord. What about me? Do I get to rest? 

I check my email. Another request of me. I want to set it aside. But I can’t. It lingers. So I serve some more. I find my heart getting frustrated–what about just wanting to email me to encourage instead of ask another service? What about the just wanting to invest BACK…you know I scratch your back then you scratch mine? What about MEEEEEE?!

Matthew 20.

When the ten heard about this, they were indignant with the two brothers. Jesus called them together and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave–just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

And that’s enough.

There’s the refining.

When we ask to be more like Jesus–it comes at a cost. A sweet, sweet, refining cost.

There will be a whole lot of more serving than being served.

A whole lot more loving than being loved back.

But in the service–somethings beautiful happens. In the moving the boundaries aside and being overprotective of my heart, my time or even my family–He speaks to my heart. BECAUSE…I do not need them to love me back. I do not need them to serve me back. I just need HIM–and He promises to care for me. And would could be greater than trusting and waiting on His care alone?

Luke 12.

“Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?

“Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.

“Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

As I meditate on His Word He shows my heart ways He continues to care for me. Through a once stranger…my Mama Judy…who is now another mother to me. There may only be a handful or even just 1 or 2 angels like these that come to your mind–but trust the Lord’s provision–because even as I remember just this one–I’m overwhelmed with how He cares for me. Why this angel has knocked on my door for the last 7 years every season–is only His sweet love knowing what my heart needs. I can trust in His provision and care. He is enough.

So this week as we prepare to host or be hosted–serve…and pick up…and do laundry and whatever He calls us too–we can rest knowing He cares for us and serves us. He is enough.

We can rejoice in ever act of serving through our hands that THIS…this is what makes us more like Christ as we serve others.

We can stop asking, “When is it my turn?” Because He paid it all–for us.

We can be aware of “healthy boundaries” but also more aware of when the Holy Spirit says, “Set those aside. Just serve. And trust me.”

We can love bigger than we thought bigger out of energy we didn’t even know we had within us. And it won’t be our strength but HIS.

For Him I am so thankful. For His love and not giving up on me…that He still uses me–despite my having to work through some things until I finally get to the point of wanting…WANTING to offer…WANTING to serve…WANTING to act like one of His flock and serve without being served back. Then the JOY follows…and I’m thankful it isn’t about ME any more. It’s not about how much I can handle–but rather what beautiful things He does through us in our WEAKNESS. Where we are weak He is strong. This–I am so thankful for.

So I open my hands…and I say…Change me Lord. Make me more like YOU. I want to be here not be served–but to just serve…and to shine your glory. Forgive me Lord and sweet friends when I have been tired or not excited about serving…if that ever was present or obvious…please forgive me because I must have been serving in my own flesh. But I open my hands today to serve out of Your great big love…with excitement and joy and love. This is only your changing love and your sweet grace we can do this. Oh how great You are!! May we serve big and love out of your strength this Thanksgiving…Amen!

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