Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Adventure Is Out There

This is my favorite moment in UP.  I love that second where Ellie's hair blows in the wind.  If ever I have known exactly how a cartoon character feels it is that very moment. That touch of peace before you decide what you must do next. 

We made the decision to move forward in growing our family through adoption oh a year and a half ago.  But I keep stalling, taking baby steps.  Mostly because my heart just wasn't ready or in the right place.  But with God touching my heart everywhere I turn these days I know its time to race on ahead.  We've met with our counselor, we've started on our paperwork, we pray hard every day for things to work out for our little family.  And we work hard to make sure things work out for our family and our new adventure that is out there waiting for us.

The hard part about working towards your own goals is that it makes it difficult to help others with their adventures.

 My friend Heather has a huge heart and has her own fabulous adventure that she is on.  After her son Samuel passed away she started the Joyful Life Library, gathering up books to donate to local Children's Hospitals.  I puffy heart love the Joyful Life Library.  I'm a mom of a reader and know that more than anything books would be the biggest comfort to my child heaven forbid we were in the hospital.   

I've struggled the past couple months with wanting to help, but not knowing how with us trying to save up for adoption expenses.  Finally I went to Heather and we came up with... 

Bags for Books and Babies! {I love a good alliteration}

If you haven't seen I've added a few items to my shop.  My shop has become my way to contribute to raising money for our adoption expenses.  Its one of the best ways for me to be a stay at home Mama to Ivy and feel like I'm helping out.  I've listed several styles of shopping bags along with a few other things.  The best part about these bags is that with each one sold, I'll be donating a book to the Joyful Life Library.  Its a triple win.  Babies get books, I get a baby, you get a bag.  :) {thats worth a happy face isn't it?!


Monday, May 30, 2011


Hope you are all having a fabulous Memorial Day weekend!  I'm just dropping in really quick to tell you about a

going on at the Larson Lingo!  I'm so honored to be included in Melissa's favorite things and I'm wishing her the bestest birthday Evah!  

Friday, May 27, 2011


I'm linking up with Jeannett at Life Rearranged today for Insta Friday.   Kind of fun if I do say so...

Ivy and I have been reading Winnie the Pooh on the Ipad.  It amazes me that she sits and listens when there are so few pictures and is grown up enough for chapter books.  Eyeore had some wise words for us the other day.  "A little Consideration, a little Thought for Others, makes all the difference."  So true.

I had fun sewing these scalloped banners for Lolo's party.  It seems so rare that I sew just for fun these days.  Mental note to try harder on that. 

Wednesday night our neighborhood had a blackout.  I was at the church for Young Women's and was sad that we didn't get to finish out our fun senior night.  I was looking forward to seeing the girls play survivor.  I came home and lit all the candles in the house and snuggled with my hubs.  When the power came back on we pretended it didn't.  Yay for the best excuse to do nothing.  

Ivy loves Picnik almost as much as I do.  We do all kinds of crazy things to her pictures.  Adding stickers and changing colors, all kinds of silly.  Just for my silly girl.

I was working on the summer TOMS display at Greenies yesterday.  They sent us all of these flags that say "I'm escaping to..." to hang in the windows.  I'm escaping to Blog Sugar this September.  Its still summer in California then right?!  Are you going?  I'm pretty sure that registration closes next week so you better hurry!  

 Where are you escaping to this summer? You know, if summer ever gets here!

life rearranged

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sea Salted Caramel Recipe

Just in case you missed the yummy treat I shared at Four Flights last week, I'm reposting it here...

 Lately I have been adding a bit of sea salt to all my sweets and have been loving the combination.  So when I saw a salted caramel recipe on pinterest I knew what my Sunday evening treat would be. Luckily I had all of the ingredients in my house which is rare for those Sunday night treat making adventures. Isn't that the worst when you don't have everything you need to try something new?  Fortunately this recipe only has three ingredients which I'm hoping you have in your house. Because if you like the whole salty/sweet thing then you will probably need to make this right away too! The original recipe was in metric measurements so I've already done the googling required for you.  And I've included a printable in case you are like me and need to give away most of what you make to get the temptation out of the house!  This recipe is adapted from Call Me Cupcake which by the way has the prettiest pictures of cakes you have ever seen.

 Here are my kitchen notes in case you are a little intimidated, which you shouldn't be because it is super easy.  {And you get to learn from my mistakes!}

+ It really is important to not to stir while melting the sugar.  I missed that part the first time and you get rock hard bits of sugar that take for-ever to melt.

+The sugar doesn't all have to be melted to remove from heat.  Once you see what is melted turn a rich amber then start swirling.

+When you stir in the butter it kind of curdles but just keep stirring it comes together!

+ I use 1/2 to 1 tsp of sea salt.  

+Be Careful!  Caramel is hot!  I promise!

+This is more of a spreadable caramel or a dip.  Just heat to drizzle.

+When I was googling the conversions the cream one said .63 cups or 3/4 cup.  Those didn't match up but I went with the 3/4 cup of cream.  The caramel ended up a lighter color and a bit runnier, more like a caramel topping.  It has a milder flavor and is just as delicious.   Feel free to try it that way too!

After I got my caramel in to a jar {one batch will fill one 1/2 pint jar or 2 of those itty bitty jars} I thought it would be such a cute thank you gift!  So I made a flag and gussied it up all cute.  As promised I've included the printable so you can make yours cute too!

I hope you like the caramel!  It is super yummy on apples, ice cream, cookies, your finger....use your imagination!  

Thirty Hand Made Days


Monday, May 23, 2011

Hello Monday.

Hello rainy monday.  I have to admit that when it is raining like it is today {and we have had a week of sun} I kind of like it.  It reminds me of home and makes me feel cozy.  As long as it doesn't stay I'm perfectly content to enjoy a day inside with my girl and a big pile of books.  Ivy and I have been playing camping,  reading book after book and playing with babies.    We have had a weekend of highs and lows so mellow is always nice.

We are getting sad this week that some of our family that we came here to be close to is moving away.  Funny thing is they are moving to Denver where we came from.  Ivy will miss Lytton who she always proclaims is her bestest friend and I'm going to miss my dear LoLo. So I planned a little girls night with just the aunties and Grandma to sit and chat one last time before she leave us for the Rocky Mountains.  {yes I'll admit I'm a wee bit jealous that they will be back in the mountains I love.  Although I'm not jealous of the snow in May.}

We enjoyed a few treats and sipped italian sodas with some happy yellow straws. . . 

turned down the lights and visited and giggled just like girls do.  

Parties are the perfect excuse to buy flowers... 

and to sew fun things and pretty up the place.

We are being brave  because we know our family will be back soon.  We are so happy for them on their new adventure. And Ivy will still proclaim Lytton to bestest friend and we will always love our crazy Lolo.  {and yes Rich we will miss you too!}  

How was your weekend?  And Happy Monday to you! 

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Won't You Come and Say Hi?!

Oh hello friends!  I'm sharing my new favorite recipe at Four Flights of Fancy today.  Andrea went on vacation so I'm repaying her the favor. 

Won't you stop by and say Hi?!


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Dreamy Giraffe Winner!

Ooh its somebody's lucky day and that person is.....

#4  Tammy from Peppermint Plum!  Congrats lady!  I hope you can pick just one!  

If you didn't win don't fret!  You can still use code: SUNSHINE to get 20% off!  

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, May 9, 2011

What I tried to say...

Having a doctor tell you that there is a zero percent chance of getting pregnant on your own is devastating.  And devastated is what I have been for so long.  After surgeries and crazy menopausal drugs and knowing that in the end it didn't matter we decided to try in vitro.  We were so blessed to have it work our first try.  But after the next two rounds failed I was still a girl who couldn't have kids.

Last Mothers Day was that lowest moment when not even having Ivy made me happy.  I remember being at the park about a month after Mother's Day and watching a mom with 3 little boys probably under three.  I watched her and I got mad.  When she put Coke in her little boys bottle I was angry.   Why could this mom who wasn't doing a good job get to have kids and I didn't?  Didn't I deserve it more than she did?  I was a way better mom than that.  It wasn't fair.

Right after that I had a big long talk with my Grandma at a Family reunion.  After talking about how life isn't perfect and that life is hard  she told me... If we were all to hang our troubles out on the line, you would pick yours and I would pick mine.  And that was from the lady that was on the fifth month of her 6 months left to live, dying from cancer.   She sat there and told me that she didn't know how I did it.  As I sat there wondering how she did it.

Some time after that I started making a conscious effort to be happy.  I decided to be thankful and grateful for the things I did have.  I remembered to be thankful for my sweet baby Ivy.  It can take effort sometimes to be happy.  I'll even fake it until I make it a lot but I've also learned that it is ok to be sad AND to be happy.  It doesn't have to be one or the other.
At christmas time someone bore their testimony and I loved what he said.

 God can't prevent the storms  in our lives.  But He does provide peace in the midst of them.  

I finally realized after all those years of praying for things to be different, for God to help our family grow and to just make it so I could have kids that I had been praying for the wrong thing.  I started praying for peace.  Peace for my heart to accept the circumstances I had been given.  I also started praying more for others and wishing peace for so many others struggling with hard things.  And as I opened my heart to others and tried to lift people up instead of worrying about my own trials, my burden became so much lighter.

I kept coming back to this quote in my head by Joseph Campbell.  I don't think there are many girls that imagine growing up and not being able to have children.  And I think that is why Mothers' Day was so hard for me last year.  I was hanging on to that life I imagined.  The one that wasn't there.  I wasn't moving forward or accepting  the one I had.  But I decided at the beginning of the year that I was going to Be.  I chose to BE  but that means I have to DO.  I have to move forward and enjoy and trust in the life that is waiting for me. 

As I thought about what I was going to say in church on Sunday, I remembered what my sweet Grandma had said about the laundry line.  I realize I have learned another lesson from that little quote.  And I think now I fully understood how much I have grown in one year.  I know that I would gladly take my trials down off the line so that lady at the park, or anyone else wouldn't have to face the same heartache. 
Mothers Day is hard for so many reasons to so many different people.  But I've learned over  this past year that if we serve others, that if we let God really be a part of our lives and if we choose to be happy that eventually we will be. 
Thank you, thank you sweet friends for all of your kind words, thoughts, prayers and support this past week. I cried my way through the whole thing and I'm really  glad its over. I didn't say everything I wanted, so I decided to share what I tried to say here as well.   I really wanted to get up and talk about how terrible my life was.  But I found that what I really wanted to share is that I'm happy. I've grown so much this past year and I'm excited to see where this next year will take me. 

Happy Mothers Day.

Much Love,  

Friday, May 6, 2011

Happy Mother's Day! Love, Joy's Hope

Hello friends! I hope that you all have a fabulous Mother's Day weekend!  I'm feeling nervous but good about my talk on Sunday. Thanks so much for the kind thoughts and prayers this week.  I'm so blessed to know so many great people who love and encourage me.  Now if we could all pray that I can NOT cry so people can understand me I think it might go ok!
My friend Julie from Joys Hope is here with a last minute Mother's Day note for you.  Julie pretty much rocks and I can't wait to eat cupcakes and spray paint things with her in September.  She is the best example of being truly GOOD and I'm so glad to have her stop by.  Take it away lady...

Mother's Day is a beautiful holiday to celebrate the women in our lives that give so much.

That make us who we are.

To be celebrated by the little ones with whom we are entrusted to grow, mold and shape into brilliant, stunning, adults.

But I haven't always felt that way.

After the loss of our first daughter, I wanted to wipe the entire day off of the calendar.  I was a mother without a child.  How could I celebrate?

Thankfully a kind, thoughtful, and generous couple from our church sent us off on a weekend getaway.

For those few days, just to be away from the pain and crushing reminder, was such a gift.

Their goodness to us in our grief, deeply changed me.  It has made me think about those who face this coming Sunday with sorrow and dread.

Those who are separated from their children, be it from loss, or distance.

Those who feel the loss of their own mothers even more acutely.

Those longing for a the laughter of a little one to fill their home.

Those on the journey through the adoption process, be it nearby or oceans away.

Those who need to be remembered.  Thought of.  Comforted.  In simple tangible ways.

A phone call.  A note.  A hug.  A cupcake.  A little bouquet of flowers.

An affirmation of the beauty that they are as a mother.  As a daughter.

Who can you remember and bless tomorrow?

I asked sweet Heather from Life Made Lovely to make this sweet printable card.

Print it out and surprise someone in need with love and thoughtfulness on their porch.

You might never know how very much, such a simple thing could mean.

Have a beautiful Mother's Day friends.

  Thank you, thank you Julie!  Happy Mothers Day to you too sweet friend.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Today I have a fun post for you from my bloggy friend Andrea!  She was my hoop art swap partner and I'm s and I can't wait to meet her this fall at Blog Sugar!  She is one stylin mama and I'm so happy to have her here today.  If you are new from Andrea's Space welcome I hope you'll stick around!

Hi Ruffled Sunshine readers!  I'm Andrea from Four Flights of Fancy, where I blog about the things I love in life, primarily family, faith, fashion and food.  I post a weekly series titled Playgrounds & Lollipops where I highlight one of my favorite outfits of the week that is child tested and mother approved, and will hopefully give a little inspiration to step outside of your style comfort zone and try something new.

I'm excited that Jenn asked me to guest post today and share some of my tips I've learned along the way while working most of my professional life in the fashion industry.  I'm a stay at home mom now, but still love to feel comfortable and stylish on a budget.  My style is not complicated or fussy, so you usually don't see my doing a lot of layering, or wearing a ton of accessories.  Getting dressed in the morning shouldn't make your head hurt is my motto.  But there are a few things I keep in mind when shopping and choosing my outfit for the day that I'd like to share.

Basic Isn't Always Better is the whole premise that I try to build my wardrobe on.  When I first became a mom, I stayed home with my daughter for the first year of her life before I went back to work.  I was dealing with an infant and I was on a budget, so I developed this mindset that each new piece of clothing I bought or wore had to be basic so that I could wear it multiple times and with many different outfits.  But what I quickly found was that I just looked the same everyday and my closet didn't bring me any joy.  For me, getting dressed helps me feel good and is something I look forward to everyday.  It's my creative outlet.  So when everything in my closet shifted to solid colors with nothing as a stand out piece, I quickly lost my zest for looking good.  Look good, feel good is my motto :)

Now, to help me stay out of that basic is better rut, when getting dressed in the morning I try to incorporate at least one of these four things into my outfit.

1. Pops of Color - You can be wearing simple blue jeans and a pair of flip flops, but if you've got a bright pop of color on top, you instantly feel a lift in your spirits.  I swear wearing a bright color makes you smile more.  It's almost impossible to be down when you see your reflection in the mirror.

2. Fun Prints - Whether it's a bold graphic, a feminine floral or a nautical stripe, incorporating some sort of print into your look gives you an instant dose of style.  I usually keep the accessories to a minimum if wearing a bold print, which makes getting dressed even easier.  Let your print be your accessory.

3. Shoes With Style - I love shoes.  Give me a cute pair of shoes and I'm a happy girl.  I love that they can make the simplest of outfits chic, and elevate it to a whole other level.  They don't need to be fancy or dramatic, just a subtle detail can make all the difference.  The right shade of leather or an interesting detail take a pair of shoes from 'meh' to wow!  And I'd rather have 1 pair of good shoes than 3 pairs of cheap shoes, without a doubt.

4. Well Appointed Accessories - Accessories stress me out so I usually try to keep it pretty simple.  I only have about 6 pairs of earrings, 3-4 necklaces and 2 statement rings I keep on rotation.  And a couple of hats.  Accessories can be tricky when caring for little kids and can get in the way, but a cute necklace or a sweet pair of earrings can make all the difference.  And hats do keep the sun out of your face ;)

Thanks for the great tips Andrea! Be sure and check out Andrea's blog and say hi!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Dreamy Giraffe {a giveaway}

Let me introduce you to Kathy from The Dreamy Giraffe.  She is so fun and funny and fabulous!  I ran across her shop at the beginning of the year and let me tell you I was hooked on the spot.  The only trouble is I had the hardest time deciding what I wanted to get!  I decided to wait it out until Kathy introduced larger prints and I got this one for Ivy's room.

Source: etsy.com via Jennifer on Pinterest

Doesn't that just perfectly remind you of my sweet girl?  Although I had a hard time choosing between that and this one...

The fun thing about Kathy's prints is you can totally get whatever hair color or eye color!  Hmmm maybe I should still get that one.

Well The Dreamy Giraffe also has the most perfect prints for Mama too.

Isn't that so true? Also available in Ice cream and cookies!  

And for your craft room?  Perfection.  

The Dreamy Giraffe has so many fun prints I think you will have as hard of time deciding what to get as I did!

And one of you lucky ducks gets to pick an 8x10 print of your choice!  

Just leave a comment here telling me what your favorite print is after you visit the Dreamy Giraffe Shop. 
{winner will be picked Tuesday May 10th}

Of course Kathy didn't want anyone to feel left out so she is offering you all a special discount! Just use 
code: SUNSHINE at checkout and receive  20 % off your order.  Sweet!.  

Happy Mother's Day from me and the Dreamy Giraffe!  


Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Mother of Three {Lovely Lindsay}

not many can capture true feelings in words like Lovely Lindsay can and I'm happy to share my space with her today...

all of a sudden, i am the mother of three.
mother's day round five.
i spent years dreaming of being somebody's mother.
stacks and stacks of journal pages devoted to someday babies.
hope chests full to the brim of newborn treasures.
i named them. mostly girls. four - no, six!
and then i waited.
and waited.
and waited.
tonight we changed my baby's bassinet into a crib.
wasn't it just a minute ago that bassinet seemed way too big for my tiny bundle of boy number three?
lucas, gavin and charlie grey.
snips and snails and puppy dog tails... and mine.


Monday, May 2, 2011

Can't We Skip That Day?!

Oh friends.  Its my least favorite day of the year, and its coming up quickly.  Traditionally I spend the day trying to think of ways to get out of going to church, end up going to church but spend  a big majority of the time in the bathroom blowing my nose and cursing my face that gets tragically blotchy from crying, and the rest of the time fielding the looks of people who feel sorry for me and my tragically blotchy face.   I bolt for the door and then spend the rest of the day trying not to be {too} terribly depressing to be around.  

What?  Isn't that what you do on Mothers Day?  



Yesterday in church someone spoke  about a personal audit.  Oh man.  That is what has been going on in my head and heart lately.  I've been asked to share my feelings about mothers day.  On mothers day.  In church.  oi.  A year ago I would have flat at said no.  But something tells me I couldn't say no if I wanted to.  Sincerely, I wish I could say no.  The thought of hundreds of people watching me cry and share my thoughts on infertility and mothers day makes me want to throw up.  But my Heavenly Father has given me an opportunity to help someone else even though I have no idea who that someone else is.  

So while I need to keep focusing on that I've asked some sweet friends to stop by and say Hi to you this week.  And we'll talk soon.




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