Transition >> The Village Magazine Journalist Submission

T R A N S I T: the carrying of people, goods or materials from one place to another...

My arms are often holding on to 25 pounds of wiggly toddler and a diaper bag bursting at the seams. My hands are full of milky sippy cups and wet paper towels and half-eaten string cheese. My mind too often consumed with planning for the future and everyday domestic to-do's - a mama's trivial measure of productivity. 

Mothering for me is both motion and stillness - a cycle of changing, adapting, getting comfy, and then changing again. Nursing - what was once a chore almost too painful to bear, became a precious communion, until so soon it drifted away and into my heart's remembering. This season of relentless transition has been one of strengthening my body and spirit to carry some heavy loads...and then learning to put everything down at the feet of Jesus. Of perseverance and self-discipline and unrivaled joy. Of picking up crumbs and toys and dirty laundry and filling up to capacity with the mundane and then being emptied of every burden only through the vast fullness of His grace. Of realizing that in filling my arms with a most sacred purpose He has given me a life with no lack and adorned my sticky fingers with the jewels of divine approval. And through the clutch of a child's tiny hand around my neck I am renewed every morning. Lord may I never become unmoved by the good things You have placed within my grip.

Zanden Grows >> 15 Months

15 months and toddlerhood is here to stay. You've chosen walking over crawling and are speaking more than signing. You love our nightly family bike rides and playing with belts in my closet and locking yourself in Khaleesi's crate and being chased around the kitchen. Your favorite foods are strawberries, bananas, pita bread and cheddar cheese. You are obsessed with doggies, "tucks" (especially Grandpa Dean's F150 and the garbage truck), and the stuffed "orse" [horse] we bought for you at Boot Barn (and all other horses whether real or in books). You take 2 naps and sleep 10-11 hours at night. You are always happy in the ocean and the pool and you get pretttttty upset whenever bath time is over. You are still the friendliest little waver and will cheer up any stranger who glances your way, and you've even been known to wave hello to the vacuum cleaner. Zanden Guy you are oh so easy to love.

Travel >> Lost Valley Ranch

It's moments like these when life starts to shrink quickly before your eyes...and you look down on the meadow you used to call home from the middle of a mountain you've been climbing so eagerly...only now it's just a hill and it's getting somehow smaller as you go. And you watch as the generations overlap into the next down in that valley, and your steps upward become slower as you take in the view. And the view becomes just as good as the hike itself, as you witness the very evidence of creation that grew inside you do the same things that once made your child-heart sing. And the song is so sweet, you resolve to stop and listen for a while.

Zanden Grows >> 13 Months Pt.2

Oh Zanden Guy, how I wish I could be more like you. Unworried about tomorrow, untainted by the doubt and the noise, uninhibited by the fear of within the bounds of the little world in which you live. I pray that smile would stay forever stretched across your cheeks and hope that glimmer of light never fades from your eyes. "But Jesus said, 'Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.'" Mat. 19:14