dance, dance, dance

love my family
love my family
i love my family
Thank you for all your excitement about yesterday’s news! Now that I’ve shared it and it’s no longer a secret, I just want to dance and par-tay! And all your enthusiasm really makes me so much more excited about it too! It’s been hard keeping that secret for a couple years (yes, a couple!). There’s a lot of excitement in our home right now, but we’ve also got a couple of the girls down with some sort of nasty cold. Ugh! We have spring break next week, so hopefully no one will be sick then, and we can play all day long, but spring cleaning will no doubt also be part of our days.

We had the most gorgeous day today. Even with some of the girls not feeling well, we had lunch outside, and I just spent 20 minutes sitting near them, enjoying the warm sun, as they sang “Let it Go” for the millionth time. I didn’t do anything, but just sit there. It was bliss. I need to make more of those “cherishing the moment” moments happen often. I’m a busy body, and am always go, go, go, so I need to remember to be still sometimes and just take it all in.

on me: dress, vintage. shirt, kohl’s (last year on sale for 8 bucks!). clogs, c/o lotta from stockholm. on true: dress, c/o fab kids. shoes, old navy. on brave: shirt, homespun vintage. pants, c/o fab kids. shoes, gap kids. on soul: dress and shorts, vintage. shoes, thrifted. on glow: dress, vintage. shoes, old navy.

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the heart of our family

“Oh How I Need You” by All Sons & Daughters from happyrichellephant on Vimeo.

My baby sister has always been the heart of our (Navales) family and she is leaving us for 11 months to go serve 11 different nations by serving people and sharing the gospel that Jesus is risen. I’ve known many people to go on some sort of missionary trip and this is definitely different. Sure, traveling sounds amazing, but she’s not staying in some fancy resort or will even have the comfort of a basic motel. On the contrary, she is going with one big backpack, a light backpack, and a one man tent. She is part of a World Race team will be totally relying on God as they embark on this journey to help the homeless, orphans, churches, and those sold to sex slavery in these various countries.

I’m always hesitant to share these kinds of needs because you expect your life to somewhat be watched (and critiqued) more carefully when asking for some sort of support. She has $16,000 to raise for her trip and has received about $4,000 thus far. Most of the money she has raised thus far, has been her own money from savings and working part-time, while she goes to school full-time. She’s cut back on her extra expenses (hasn’t even made a trip to the thrift store in ages!) since God had placed this trip on her heart, and everything she’s been doing has been going towards the money she needs to raise.

I know she needs a lot of prayer the most, as this will be all new for her and her faith will be stretched in ways unimaginable. If your heart is led to even give $1 (or more!), I know it is much appreciated (seriously, even a buck helps!). Every penny makes a difference and helps her meet her goal (If 12,000 people gave a dollar, the goal would be achieved!). Even if you don’t believe in God, I’m sure you believe in the good done in servings others, and she is going to be doing plenty of that. That’s what her life will be all about for the next few months. She’s going to have to die to self, give up all the comforts she used to, and love and serve other people she’s never even met (this world could use more people like my sister!). Heck, if for some reason you just need a tax break, supporting her is a good way to get it.

Just watching my video you see the joy she has. She’s like that all the time (well, not first thing in the morning because it takes her a bit of time to wake up)! You meet her and you know she’s different. It’s all because of God! And she wants to share that joy with others. I’ve seriously watched the video a ton of times and cry every single time. I’m so, so, so proud of the godly lady she has become. Joy and life just exudes from her. She’s not your average 22 year old and her life is definitely creating ripple effects in this world. I’m going to miss her so much (and oh my gosh I know my parents will be sooooo sad without her) and when she comes back True will be 9!

You can read more about her story here, follow along with her journey here, and if you want to help support her, you can do that here.

Most of all, please pray for her and our family, especially my parents because the baby is leaving the nest! And really, how amazing is that video?! My sister truly is the heart of the family, and my parents are so fun and loving, that you totally see where she gets it from!

 

 

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focus: our days are full

home
home
home
home
home life
home life
home
Our days have been so full. We are down to one car for the time being (Ben’s needs a new engine), so we are making do with sharing. Though with this sharing business, 2 hours of my day, with the girls in tow, is spent taking Ben to work and picking him up. While time already feels like it’s in short supply, it’s been feeling really depleted these past couple weeks with having to spend more time on the road than normal.

We’ve been trekking on with school and I think we will be done with most of our curriculum well before the school year ends. The only one we always seem to be playing catch up with is math. Oh math! It’s never been my strongest suit and I admit that I’m probably not helping my girls love it either. Nevertheless, the kids must study it because otherwise one day they might find themselves way in over their head in credit card debt and it might be because they won’t know have the math knowledge to prevent them from spending money they don’t have. Let’s hope they don’t get there though, so for now, I’ll keep chugging along with math and Ben will keep doing Dave Ramsey Junior lessons with them.

Anyway, I love the flexibility we have in homeschool. If we get really focused in the beginning of the week, we can charge through my lesson plans and then Fridays can sometimes be a light project day. I love that! Sometimes though, it does cross my mind that if I sent the kids to school, I would get all this free time and it might be glorious! But then I remember why I homeschool, and well that’s that. I have to keep our bigger picture in mind rather than some peace and quiet, I’ll have plenty of time for that later. These days are long and time is short thing is really true. They’ll all be out of the house before you know it!

Despite feeling really overwhelmed, more like crazy, yesterday was a good day. I had been waiting for something for a very long time and it finally came! It kinda lightened up the load I was feeling and made things slightly less stressful. I also think I’ve been stressed because I’m working on a little project (can’t wait to share!!!), but I have some sort of creative block and I’m stuck on ideas for this project. It’s frustrating and my ideas about it just feel so scattered. I hope I get it together soon because well, I’ve got no choice but to get it done. Focus, Ruby, focus. 

Oh and that picture above has been my daily uniform of late. These Aladdin-like pants from Old Navy and this super comfy top from Gusta are so good together, and if I have to leave the house, I just slip on my leopard sneakers (it was Ben’s love day gift to me from here). Maybe once the craziness in my brain clears up (will it ever?), I’ll be in the mood to throw on a dress again or maybe sewing up a new one will get me in the mood too. I think sewing up a new one should do the trick, now only if I can find more time. Anyone know where I can get more of that?!

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lots of green and rainbows

2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
Sunday afternoon, True came up to me and said, “Oh mommy! I can’t wait until Saint Patrick’s Day tomorrow! I can’t wait for the surprises!” I had totally forgotten and in my head I said, “Oh crap. What am I going to do?!” Then, the rest of the afternoon was a whirlwind and I forgot about it, until it was time to put the girls to bed, and then I started coming up with a plan.

Luckily, I had a helium tank, so I started blowing up tiny balloons and putting them all on a string in rainbow order. I would have done an air pump, but we couldn’t find our hand held one, so it was helium tank it is! I made a quick little note, added that to the beginning of the string at the top of the stairs and the whole string of balloons led to their pot of “gold” at the bottom of the stairs. For the prizes, thankfully I had some little things I had bought from the dollar section at target (was saving it for a rainy day) and each of the girls got one little special treat: Glow got sunglasses, Soul got a My Little Pony coloring book, and True and Brave got those skip-hop-rope-ball things.

I woke up before them, so that I can make one more little string of rainbow ordered balloons. I attached that to their pot, so it would still be floating when they discovered it, and waited for them to wake up. Once they did, they saw the note, and started following the rainbow to their pot of gold. They were all so excited to get their “magical” treats.

The day proceeded like normal, but they all just made sure to wear green, and they made sure I wore green too! We had breakfast together, did school, then lunch, then more school, and then they played and crafted up their own St. Paddy’s Day treats for Ben and me.

2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
st. paddy's day 2014
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
2014 st. paddy's day
Snack time yesterday afternoon was a little bit special too. I took out some ice cream, we just happen to have vanilla and mint chocolate chip on hand (totally perfect for the occasion!), and some rainbow colored sprinkles (the sprinkles and containers are from Layer Cake Shop), and we had ourselves a nice little ice cream celebration. The girls loved it and were totally relishing that they got ice cream as a snack. The rest of the afternoon was a blur of play and crafts, and while we did have some unlucky news regarding Ben’s car yesterday (it bit the dust and now we’re down to one car), our Saint Patrick’s Day was definitely a good day. These girls get so excited about the simplest holidays and it’s fun to feed off their excitement and make those days special for them (even if my ideas did come last minute!).

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focus: happy it’s friday

School-wise this week we were totally on the ball, so much so, that today’s a lighter day filled with studying the desert and doing some art projects. House-wise, I feel like everything is a little bit messier than normal. Sanity-wise, I’m yelling by the time 7:30 rolls around. It’s probably partially because Ben’s worked 3 late days this week, but man oh man, I’m cranky once that sun goes down. Could it be that I’m a mom-werewolf?! All in all, we’re still good over here.

Today’s Friday, that means it’s clean-up day, True will do her weekly baking, and we will have family movie and cuddle time at night. Then, the girls will go off to bed, and Ben and I get our alone time (with our favorite ceviche). It’s nothing fancy, but those simple things are what make our Fridays so great.

My brain is frozen and I’ve got no more words left, but enjoy your Friday!

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