"I should not talk so much about myself if there were any body else whom I knew as well."
-Henry David Thoreau

Friday, July 21, 2017


Grandpa John had a birthday and by some miracle everyone was able to gather last night to have dinner and celebrate.  Semi-blurry pictures to prove it...
Please note the smoke cloud coming off all those candles!  Eleanor pointed and said, "Fireworks!"
 Someday I'll get him to smile for real and not act like a goon every time I want a picture with him.  Someday. 
 Eleanor was SO pumped about Aunt Jessica's cupcakes.  I just stripped her down and let her have at it.  The icing mess gave me anxiety, but I survived. 

 Eleanor had fun swinging with Alex & Corbin. 
 Grandpa and the grands. 

 Kudos to Megabyte in Rogers for replacing the recalled camera on my iPhone this morning.  They had the part, the tech worked me in, and in less than 2 hours they had it done.  That beats the heck out of Simply Mac's offer to order the part, send it off for repair, and leave me without a phone for 5-7 days.  I'm back in picture taking business, so I'm holding out for the newest iPhone in a few months to upgrade my phone.

Sometimes I'm raw and honest with all of you who read this blog.  Sometimes it's a form of therapy for me and you've all been through a lot with us.  But... lots of times this is just a really good place for me to focus on the good stuff in life.  My children, my family, my friends, my God, my adventures... and I love that.  Then I saw an Instagram post yesterday of a sign that read, "Imagine if we obsessed about the things we loved about ourselves".  That's hard, y'all.  It is for me, anyway.  I can find good stuff in everyone else, but I often only focus on the things I don't like about myself.  (Except my hair: you know I have a love affair with my crazy hair.)  I know that I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I am His.  Why in the world would I be so hesitant to celebrate myself and the little details that make me Mandy?  So I'm going to try harder to be nice to myself.  Even nice to myself in public.  Here it goes...
I love how I garden.  I love that my idea of gardening is raised beds with a handful of plants that provide fresh produce for my family.  I'm so grateful that I live in a place & time where this is a hobby and not a necessity for my family's survival.  I love that I take squash bugs and downy mildew personally and feel offended every time I find a new leaf covered in squash bug eggs.  I love that I'm growing tons of tomatoes that I only sort of like to eat.  I really love putting on these weathered gloves and getting a little bit sweaty when I pick the day's harvest.

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