Interiors: That Suit You

Do you prefer color…

or black and white?

Would you like to do out in the open…

or should you stick to out of sight?

What suits you?


Design, by Kristyn

(kitchens, kitchen, kitchens


Like Mother: Like Daughter

My Mommy and Me
Me and My Mommy’s Leg!
Me and You!

Dear Hensley,

Hi little gal. I got some photos from my mama of me as a baby girl. Everyone asks your dad and I “who you look like.” Most think you look more like your dad, and I’d agree. However, you do look a bit like me as a wee one. I guess that’s what happens when genes collide, right? You look a bit like both of us! I’ll post photos of your dad as a baby boy soon!

You are 16 months old today. Tegegne is your best friend. He loves you so much. You even let him be rough and tumble on occasion. Your dad is pretty fond of you as well. And so is Grandpa Ben. Those boys, what have you done to them? You’re also my little buddy and I totally love relaxing with you. You’re now saying “Up Peese,” you rub my belly and say ba-bee, you dance with or without music. We love you, kid.



Person: A-Lity

Are you a day dreamer? Or does daydreaming frighten you because it often sends security right out the door? Or maybe you need to understand everything before a grand idea can come about. Does daydreaming seem like a waste of time because you are motivated by productivity and success?

Michael learned quickly that I love change, daydream often, get carried away, and get reeled back in (by him!), and we continue on. I am an adventurer. Motivated by the need to be happy and plan enjoyable activities, to contribute to the world, and to avoid suffering and pain. 

Do you feel like you know yourself and the personalities of those around you? It was so good for me to realize that just because I constantly want to plan enjoyable activities, doesn’t mean everyone else wants to attend them! It is quite good to have peaceful evenings at home.

Being married, I find it so helpful when I consider Michael’s personality along with my own as we do life together. Then there is our children’s personalities. We are really seeing Tegegne’s come forth lately! Michael noted that it’s so interesting that we do not know the genes or personalities of his birth parents. He realized this as he sees Hensley do things just as he did at her age. 

I must take time to stop and think. 


(These thoughts were empowered by the Enneagram. photo.) 

Dear Tegegne: Hi Kid!

Dear Tegegne,

Hi there. I’ll start by saying what Olivia’s mom says, “You wear me out, but I love you.” You are so thoughtful, intuitive, funny, and wild, strong-willed, and full of life! Friends say you are mellowing out a bit. You can entertain yourself, and I appreciate that. If I don’t stick to my effective “timeout” 1-2-3 counting, I’ll find myself in a discussion with you that is not necessary. I must remember, even though I count a lot, that it’s still the most effective way of discipline. 

You and Ababayeh rode bikes along all of Cliff Drive the other night. He was so proud of you. Many hours have been spent in your sandbox already. You love that thing. I don’t record our conversations that often, but like most kids your age you say lots of funny things. 

Here’s a bit from this morning:

T: “Penguins make a circle so they can get cool! They just come together…”

T: “Mom, what if I had a “deck” on my back? 
M: “A duck?”
T: “No, a deck! Like Ababayeh is going to build in the back yard.”
M: “Oh, well I guess people would walk on your back.”
T: “But not without asking first, right?”

T: “If you were a chocolate mommy, Fields would be chocolate, right?”

M: “Tegegne, what is the rule with Hensley on the stairs?”
T: “Not to touch her…but I was just helping her. She was in danger.”

T: “I can’t wait to go to the swimming pool and meet Ababayeh there!”

We love you son,


Words: From the Heart

Words That Come From the Heart
Words that do not become flesh in us remain “just words.”  They have no power to affect our lives.  If someone says,  “I love you,” without any deep emotion, the words do more harm than good.  But if these same words are spoken from the heart, they can create new life.
It is important that we keep in touch with the source of our words.  Our great temptation is to become “pleasers,” people who say the right words to please others but whose words have no roots in their interior lives.  We have to keep making sure our words are rooted in our hearts.  The best way to do that is in prayerful silence.
- Henri J. M. Nouwen

Tag Team: Back Again

Not many things in life are more satisfying, more rich, more trying and tough, more full of hope and life than the sweet sweet bond of marriage. 

God is doing a good work in Michael and I, showing us that life together can be way good when we tap into the rich source of life in Jesus. I’d say getting through tough times isn’t easy, but afterwards there is a new perspective, a deeper understanding, and enduring love. 

Parenthood has tried us the most, and brought us deep joy. Tonight we had a few simple moments that made us glad. Tegegne has a new favorite song, “You Make Beautiful Things” and he was singing it with all his heart in the back seat. And he then said, “God made us out of the dust!” On the way home from visiting a friend, Hensley was crying a sleepy cry. Often we are not excited to hear this, but tonight Michael pointed out the sweet sound of life coming through her little cry. We were comparing it to the first time we heard her cry. Pulled in the drive and did the usual, one-to-one carry the kids to bed routine, but again Michael pointed out how sweet it was. Sweet to have our children rest in our arms and trust us to carry them to their cozy beds and wish them a good night. 

Doing these things together, with Michael, makes all the difference. 

Tag team, back again.



P.S. (There ya go, Jacob and Nickie, a line item or two for your “pro’s” list!)