This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WellYesMoment #CollectiveBias


We are elbows deep in fall, friends.  The leaves are changing and there’s a bit of a chill in the air.  It’s an exciting moment for us. It’s our first real Fall and we’re looking forward to all of the small town fall festivities. I am so excited about the next season and for hitting our milestone of being in Nebraska for ONE whole year!

If you have followed along with us for some time, you know that last November, we relocated our family to the midwest. We moved from our home in sunny south Florida, to the freezing cold weather of Nebraska!  As with all new adventures, everything was beautiful and lovely. The snow, the crisp cold air, the mansions that are worth pennies, the Christmas decorations. Everything was new and full of possibilities. It was all lovely and amazing. I was on cloud nine until I found myself shut-indoors with three little humans, hiding from the blizzard-weather.

The tough part of it all, was not how cold it actually got, but how long it stuck around. It wasn’t until late March that we saw a glimpse of spring and felt the first warm breeze.

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This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.#GigglesandWiggles #CollectiveBias. Because of my partnership with Gerber, my little one is ineligible to win the Gerber Photo Search or a weekly prize, but you may be eligible so make sure you submit a photo of your baby and/or pet!


Hi friends! Today I want to spend some time talking about our sweet pooch Bauer. Bauer has been around for about seven years and he is as much a part of our family as our children are.  It’s been a lot of fun experiencing all of these new seasons and stages with Bauer by our side and it’s been such a fun treat seeing Bauer and our kids develop a great relationships.  It may sound strange for people who are not dog owners, but after you’ve had your doggie for such a long time, you can’t really remember what life was like before them.  Grace learned to say his name when she was one, Haddon thinks Bauer is his and only his, and Emory has shared all of her food with him since day one!   The kids have a great relationship with him, and today I wanted to share with you five tips on how to create an environment for your kids and your dogs to be the best of friends (below).
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Friends, if you have followed me on Instagram this past week, you know that our little site was hacked! Initially it sent me into a panic (mainly because Alex was away, I was home alone with three kids and I needed to make phone-calls and clean the mess up fast!) However, once I took a step back, God was gracious with me and gave me a peace that only comes from Him!  The site is now clean and my heart rejoices because through this “trial” I was able to learn a few things and to grow as a blogger and deepen my faith!

Three things I learned from my site being hacked.

  1. Everything happens for a reason- Seriously. I say this ALL the time but do I really believe it?  The answer is yes! Romans 8:28 says “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”  What’s the exact reason my website was hacked? That I can’t answer, but I can say that this trial gave me the opportunity to connect with a few online friends as well as learn a few things about properly protecting my site.  The hack could have been worse. There could have been bigger consequences. My site being hacked raised up a flag for me and led me to educate myself on properly protecting this website.
  2. Prayer changes your perspective– It’s easy for me to feel like a victim.  In this case, my website was hacked and someone out there was actively harming my little space of the internet. However, when I take a look at the bigger picture, I can see that there is a soul out there who is doing harmful things because he/she is in need of Jesus.  So, I can either be angry at them or PRAY and ask God to have mercy on them.  Maybe no one has ever prayed for them before, maybe God is allowing me to have a small impact on their salvation story.  Not sure.  But man I prayed for the hackers and for the people who are searching for very sinful things in the internet. I asked God to save their souls and thanked Him for an opportunity to really pray for someone I would have never thought to pray for.
  3. Be on guard-  I wouldn’t say I’m naive to the fact that sinful people do sinful things on the internet, but I’m usually one of those people who say “I never thought this would happen to me!” I honestly never thought someone would want to hack a little ol’ family website, but they did.  This incident has taught me to protect myself and my children and to ask God for wisdom when it comes to sharing on the internet, and protecting my family on the internet.

Also, this is what I did to fix the problem:

Contact your hosting provider– My hosting provider referred me to a website security company that talked me through the steps I needed to take.  I ended up going with a security company that best fit my budget, but that initial call helped me understand what was happening and what steps I needed to take to fix the problem.

The security company cleaned up the malware and asked me to do the following:

  • update all content management system to the latest version
  • update my website plugins
  • change ALL my passwords
  • restore from backup (I never backed up my site, but if I did, this would have solved the issue)
  • scan my computer
  • re-submit your website to google
  • re-sumbmi your sitemap to google
  • set up a firewall

This could have been prevented had I updated my plugins.  I ignored the notifications for updates and that’s how the spammers found their way in. Go figure!

Oh my friends, I am praying for you today. For your websites and for His peace and mercy to be with you!

Any tips on how you keep your website clean?

What you may have missed:

Finding balance in the everyday

A little about what we believe


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give thanks

A few Thanksgiving thoughts:

  • We’re just coming out of a 17 day stretch with Alex being gone and the kids and I cranking it out at home. They were tough days. Long days. Some days ended with wine and tears and some with laughter and pillow fights.  I wish I could say it’s over but it’s only a matter of time before he ships off again. Today I’m thanking God for these past 17 days.  We made it.
  • My parents spent a lot of time here with me.  They have always been my constant. It doesn’t matter where we are in life, they always come to the rescue and this time around they didn’t disappoint.  As soon as they heard that Alex was going to be gone for an extended time, they moved right into our third bedroom.  I wonder what life will be like without them near to us.  I’m not looking forward to finding myself in need of them and knowing that for the first time ever, they won’t be there.
  • Emory is not sleeping through the night.  I tried forcing her a couple of nights ago and it ended up with a puke fest that quickly turned into me saying “that’s it, you’re sleeping next to me until you’re 15!”  She’s such a good girl and she’s our last so part of me wants to hold on to the dependency aspect of our relationship a little longer than I did with the older two. I’m pretty sure she’ll be the child who has to sleep train me!
  • Our Nebraska home is almost ready for us.  I can’t believe we’ll get to live in such a beautiful place.  I shared a bedroom with my three brothers until I turned 15.  It’s such a surreal feeling to be able to provide for your kids things that we never had or dreamt of growing up, like their own room!
  •  I’ve been binge watching the hallmark channel (online because we don’t have cable) and my Christmas spirit is bursting within me.  We arrive at NE on the 7th of Dec but our things to get up there until the 15th giving us only 10 days of Christmas.
  • I’m pretty sure I tore some sort of ligament or tendon in my ankle.  I injured it about three months ago and I can’t seem to shake the pain away.  I’ve never feared seeing a Dr. before because I know the diagnosis is going to make me rest and this is not a season for rest. Maybe it’ll be forced rest. Maybe it’s for the best.
  • We’re going to my in laws home for Thanksgiving.  I’m in charge of a dessert and drinks.  I’ll be poaching some pears and making sangria! We requested cuban food for Thanksgiving because we have no idea when we’ll get to have real Cuban food again so we’ll indulge in our ultimate comfort food.
  • Thinking about this verse. Give thanks in all circumstances for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you… this season we’re in, our health struggles, our parenting, our new Nebraska chapter, these are all things that He willed for us.  These are things that our in our lives for a purpose and we are to give thanks in all of these circumstances. So humbling. Also, so much peace comes from knowing that He is sovereign and has plans to prosper and not harm us, plans to give us hope and a future (Jeremiah 9:11) I am so thankful for that.  For His will and for His plan.

I hope everyone has an amazing Thanksgiving!


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