Monday, May 31, 2010

Meal Plan Monday

We're back! I've got a boatload of pictures, just waiting to be shared, but I'll leave you with this one of Lily at Aki Sushi in Corpus



Here's what we're having this week, all super easy so I can get back in the swing of things :]



Breakfasts:
Lily:
  • Steamed egg yolks [go here to see more on how to prepare]
  • Fruit or veggies steamed
  • *We've added soaked oatmeal for miss Lily because she is SO hungry all the time!
E&M:
  • Steamed eggs with fruit
  • Omlet with homemade soaked wheat rolls
  • Soaked Oatmeal
  • Soaked Muesli
  • Soaked Panckakes [SO good, we served them last week with Amish butter and raw, local honey and steamed fruits. It was very filling! We used the recipe right out of NT because I didn't really like most of the ones I found online]
  • Soaked Dutch Baby Pancakes [So far, this is Eamon's favorite "soaked" recipe]
***any recomendations to make this not so runny/griddy/DONE in the middle?
  • Fried Eggs with Homemade yogurt

Lunches:
  • Salad w/pan fried fish [talapia, flounder, or salmon]
  • Fish [the same mentioned above] with brown rice and steamed veggies
  • Hummus plate [chic peas soaked for 24 hours and cooked in the crockpot over night. VERY tedious, but noticeably tastier.

Snacks
  • Laver [nori]
  • Fruit/veggies
  • dehydrated fruits and veggies
  • sweet potato fries
  • Yogurt
  • brown rice crackers [Lily is LOVING these]
Dinners:
Monday: Roasted veggies with macaroni and raw shaved asparagus salad

Tuesday: Portobella mushroom burgers

Wednesday: Beans and brown rice

Thursday: New Dehli potatoes

Friday: Lentil soup

Saturday: Pizza

Sunday: Flounder and cous cous

Hope you all had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!
Mae

Monday, May 24, 2010

Whittney waits for "Beebs"

Here's some pictures of my very first maternity shoot behind the lens :] I had so much fun and was blown away with how BEAUTIFUL this mama's belly is! I had a BLAST! Oh, and I don't know how anyone does this job professionally, I just wanted to squeal the WHOLE time, but don't worry, I refrained.








Ok, ya'll, that's it! For real! See ya in a week!
Mae

Meal Plan Monday: Vacation Edition

Before I begin with the Special Edition Meal Plan, can I just gripe about Lily for OOOOOONE sec? Yes? Ok.
So, last night we planned a babysitter so that we could enjoy the series finale of Lost with the Brownings. My daughter goes to sleep every night at 7 p.m.
AHEM, MY DAUGHTER GOES TO SLEEP EVERY NIGHT AT 7 P.M.
So, 7 comes around and my daughter is a kicking, screaming, emotional wreck.
7:30 comes around...Lost finale starts at 8...there's no way we can make it without missing the first few minutes...Lily? Still kicking, screaming, blubbering mess.
We send Kissy and her mama home and try to come to terms with not partay-in it up with the Brownings.
8 comes around and Lily is just walking around and laughing, demanding food from whomever, and wherever she could get it.
8:30? Stiiill demanding food
By 9 I decide to cook Lily MORE food.
This starts to work some...Dreary eyed baby decides she wants to nurse now...score.
NINE FORTY-FIVE rolls around, and I start to take Lily to her crib. She wakes up, cries a bit and then hits the sack.
In other words, THREE HOURS after her bedtime, 30 minutes to spare into the series finale, Lily fell asleep.
She woke back up at about 12:30 and decided she was going to die unless I held and nursed her all night...Lily finally went to sleep at 5:45 last night...yup, I didn't even know there were two 5:45s in one day...
TURNS OUT she had a diaper full of poop, and when I finally thought to check it out 5:30, it had been rubbing her raw for some time...
All of this to say, I'm a terrible mom...no, I know, I'm not but seriously, WHO DOESN'T check their kids diaper after HOURS of battle?

So anyway...I'm hoping that tonight will go MUCH smoother because we are leaving for Rockport at 9 tonight, hoping to keep Lily asleep for the majority of the [7 hr] ride.

Here's what we'll be eating in Rockport this week!


Breakfasts:
Lily:
  • Steamed egg yolks [go here to see more on how to prepare]
  • Fruit or veggies steamed
  • *We've added soaked oatmeal for miss Lily because she is SO hungry all the time!
E&M:
  • Omlet with homemade soaked wheat rolls
  • Soaked Oatmeal
  • Soaked Muesli
  • Soaked Panckakes
  • And super special real mexican taquitos in the morning...holy crap, i can't wait

Lunches:
  • Salad
  • Fish [hopefully freshly caught!] with brown rice and steamed veggies
  • Hummus plate [chic peas soaked for 24 hours and cooked in the crockpot over night. VERY tedious, but noticeably tastier.
  • Roasted veggies with macaroni
  • Rice noodles with pesto
  • Kung Pao Shrimp

Snacks
  • Laver [nori]
  • Fruit/veggies
  • Fruit roll ups
  • dehydrated fruits and veggies
  • sweet potato fries
  • Yogurt
  • brown rice crackers [Lily is LOVING these]
Dinners:
Monday: Speghetti in the car...so romantic, lol

Tuesday: Burgers on my parents grill

Wednesday: Dinner with the Muilenburgs! Ah! It's been years!

Thursday: Hu Dat, the best local Vietnamese joint in town. In high school, I ate there...3-4 times a week...hehe...

Friday: Lentil soup [my sis is graduating that night!]

Saturday: Panjo's Pizza. Only homemade pizza joint that I can still eat.

Sunday: Veggie Primavera :] and heading back up that night.

It'll be pretty quiet here for the next week, but I promise to be back wiht lots of fun pictures, hopefully rested and relaxed!
Mae

Friday, May 21, 2010

Preparing for Vacation, Oximoron?

Sorry for my absence! I have been getting our house ready for vacation!
We leave Monday night after Eamon gets off work and are headed to Rockport! Woo!

I try to post some sneak peaks of a maternity shoot I'm doing Sunday [YAY!] and then our vacation meal plan. Very, VERY excited to spend a whole week with my little trio and see our family :]

I got my macro lens today, and played around with it for a bit today...


AND Our tomato plants are going crazy! We've got about 2 dozen tomatoes growing.

I may or may not be holding one of our plants up with an old guitar stand...


Well, hope your Friday night is lovely, back to packing and planning and cleaning for me ;]
Mae

Monday, May 17, 2010

Meal Plan Monday

Don't worry! I'm still here!

We are busily getting ready for our vacation next week [why is it that you have to do work to relax?] and I'm getting pretty excited.

Today though, I took a break from planning, shopping and cleaning and went to the Botanic Gardens with Katie and her son Henry. It was HUMID, but still really pretty. Never, EVER have I heard two women groan and complain as much as we did about holding our babies...weaklings...

The gardens were beautiful as always



And Henry kept Katie SUPER busy, running around constantly, but stealing Lily's heart minute by minute.



And we found this little guy makin his way back to the water :] Lily tried to eat him, so I helped him out.



And speaking of Lily, tonight was one of those nights I just fell in love with her again. You know what I mean? When they are semi manageable, sweet, and giggly, yup, that's what we had tonight :] LOOK at those curls


GAH! I love her.

Ok, enough gushing, here's what we're eating this week:

Breakfasts:
Lily:
  • Steamed egg yolks [go here to see more on how to prepare]
  • Fruit or veggies steamed
  • *We've added soaked oatmeal for miss Lily because she is SO hungry all the time!
E&M:
  • Steamed eggs with fruit
  • Omlet with homemade soaked wheat rolls
  • Soaked Oatmeal
  • Soaked Muesli
  • Soaked Panckakes [SO good, we served them last week with Amish butter and raw, local honey and steamed fruits. It was very filling! We used the recipe right out of NT because I didn't really like most of the ones I found online]
  • Soaked Dutch Baby Pancakes [So far, this is Eamon's favorite "soaked" recipe]
***any recomendations to make this not so runny/griddy/DONE in the middle?
  • Fried Eggs with Homemade yogurt

Lunches:
  • Salad w/pan fried fish [talapia, flounder, or salmon]
  • Fish [the same mentioned above] with brown rice and steamed veggies
  • Hummus plate [chic peas soaked for 24 hours and cooked in the crockpot over night. VERY tedious, but noticeably tastier.

Snacks
  • Laver [nori]
  • Fruit/veggies
  • dehydrated fruits and veggies
  • sweet potato fries
  • Yogurt
  • brown rice crackers [Lily is LOVING these]
Dinners:
Monday: Angel hair with lentil bolognese

Tuesday: New Dehli Potato and Bean Stew

Wednesday: Sloppy lentils

Thursday: Kung poa shrimp

Friday: Two mushroom Barley soup.

Saturday: Pizza

Sunday: Lost is ending this week- HO-LY CRAP! And the finale is on Sunday, so THAT'S when we'll be at the Brownings.


***IF YOU HAVE any suggestions for meals appropriate for my bottomless pit of a 10 month old daughter, I'd really appreciate the help. She's been waking up a lot lately because she's hungry.***

Next week, my plan is gonna be extra awesome bc I get to incorporate all of the [overly missed] local eats that we will be venturing to during the week! Yes, we plan our trips around food...I know...
Mae

Friday, May 14, 2010

Raising a Modest Woman: Starting Out

Recently I've been talking to some of my mom friends about raising our daughters. I have no experience with boys so this post will just be about my experience with girls, those of you with boys, PLEASE share your experiences, advice, struggles, philosophies or even what your mom did with you.

I really got my butt in gear yesterday when I saw this picture of my friend, Morgan with her adorable baby Eliza.

Now, if you don't know Morgan- she is one hot mama. Lost all of her baby weight by simply wishing it away when E was just a few weeks old [well, sort of ;] Logically, there is NO reason she should be all covered up in a one piece.
I shot her a text that read "Love your bathing suit, way to rock the modesty"
She then began to tell me her desire to be a good example for her daughter, something Eamon and I talk about a lot. We started talking about our family's philosophies on raising modest children. And in my very elegant, modest language, I said
"Eamon and I want to teach our girls not to show anything they don't want touched, in other words if her shorts are riding up her *cougha$$cough*, she shouldn't be surprised if someone comes up and grabs it."
If you want the child friendly version "I see your hiney, all white and shiney, if you don't hide it..." yadda yadda yadda.

Now, I know some people are just obsessive about not being touched, at all and that's not what I'm talking about. If someone were to brush up against your exposed arm you wouldn't be as frazzled as you would be if they brushed up against your exposed boobs.

So what are some ways that I can keep my daughter from wanting to dress in a provocative way?

*It starts with you
As you know, we live in a society that is driven, empowered, and survived on sex. So how do you stay up with the times and not become a sex symbol outside of your home? It's a fine line.
  • At home, I encourage you to make every effort to be THE sexiest woman your man could want- look at all of your competition out there! It's overwhelming. Satisfy your man's visual eye candy dietary needs at home every now so he won't look for dessert elsewhere!
  • But outside of the home...be careful.Let's face it, you could be wearing an abaya and still get cat-called. Sometimes, you just can't win. But dress with purpose and modesty.
When I was in high school I came across this verse as I was praying about one of my friends who was having sex with her boyfriend, and myself for the way I dressed on dates with Eamon:

1 Thessalonians 4:3-8 (NIV)
3It is God's will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; 4that each of you should learn to control his own bodya]">[a] in a way that is holy and honorable, 5not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God; 6and that in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. The Lord will punish men for all such sins, as we have already told you and warned you. 7For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. 8Therefore, he who rejects this instruction does not reject man but God, who gives you his Holy Spirit.

I underlined verse 6 because it was then I realized that I was causing my boyfriend [and future husband] to sin! Then my 17 year old self realized that all girls dressing in an unacceptable way were doing to the boys and men around us. I'm in no way saying your asking for it, but I AM saying that we are not just dressing for ourselves.
I talked to a friend before we got married about packing for my honeymoon, not being able to decide what to wear in the water- one or two pieces. We both said that while yes, we were now married, it would be unfare to OTHER married men and their wives to wear a two piece. But in an attempt to be "grown up sexy wives" we both bought two pieces. She bought a string bikini.
Even last summer, 8 months pregnant I wore a two piece on our anniversary vacation...8 months pregnant. Yes, there was something cute and sexy about it, and I love that my husband loved it...but so did every other guy on Town Lake.
This year will be different, and I wish it didn't take motherhood to make that change in me.

Want some ideas on how to be fashionable without being hootchie? Check out Chelsea's blog. One of the most fashionable mamas I know ;]


*Infancy-Toddlerdom
Now, there's not much you can give them responsiblity for at this age, so this age is still very reliable on your choices. Tonight on ABC's Episode of "What Would You Do?" they will discuss breastfeeding in public.

Now without seeing the episode [it doesn't air til tonight] or ever even seeing this show, many of my breastfeeding, Christian moms are cursing the very air the producers breathe. I really hope that it's not going to be as bad as everyone thinks it is. But aside from that, I'm noticing a trend amungst the Christian breastfeeding population that I know.
"I will feed my baby, whenever, HOWEVER I want. If you don't like it, put a blanket over YOUR head"
Let me be clear- I will never allow anyone to tell me I must bf Lily in a bathroom stall, and I will never be discouraged from breastfeeding in public. I admitedly do not use a cover in my own home, or in front of other women who I know are not offended by nursing without a cover, or do it themselves.
THAT SAID- I will try my hardest [even as I write this post] to not stir up dissension in my brother's and sister's hearts.

Prov 16:28
A perverse man stirs up dissension


So, instead of acting like "This is not a sex object, there's milk coming out of it for Goodness sake", I started to recognize, well to me it's not, but to them it may be. I started using a cover, even though it's a pain, even though Lily still flashes her mama's goods, EVEN THOUGH I said I never would...to let people know that this is natural, this is beautiful, and I am not trying to offend you.

I saw a beautiful example of this last week at bible study. One of my friends is still nursing her two year old. Last week K was still trying to be a part of the conversation, while being latched on. Her mother quietly said "K, what did we talk about helping mommy be modest?" It was beautiful! K turned her face back around, covered mommy up and quickly finished her snack so she could finish playing.
Her mommy valued her modesty in public so much that she taught her daughter of TWO years it's importance.

Another issue that come up with breastfeeding is the fashion part. Sure, some moms can hide their breasts with their baby's little head/mouth, but others...not so much. Women, TRY to be conscience about whether your nursing tank is giving everyone a peep show, it's hard I KNOW, but it is something to be warry of.
Husbands, help your wife out! Sometime's I'll see pictures of myself and I say "BABE?!? Why didn't you tell me!?!" And it's honestly because I don't care at home, so we don't notice.

"Ok, Ok, I get it, stop dressing like a floosie! But what about the baby?"


Here are some tips for the itty bitty ladies in your life.
  • Nekkid time is for the home- Make a habbit early on of not allowing her to be a nudist in public [this is one a certain mama mae or mae not be working on ;]
  • String are on jelly fish, not bikinis- I was shocked when I found a website that sold JUST string bikinis for babies. At first I thought, "Oh cute! Their little bellies will hang out." Then I saw the site. I felt so uneasy. I was going to put a link up here, but decided against it. That's how much it affected me... Opt for a cute one piece instead. And if you have a baby belly that you just must see hanging out, opt for a tankini with a skirted bottom.
  • Panties see potties, not parties- Once they are out of diapers, make sure their panties are only seeing the potty by putting on shorts under their skirts and dresses.

I hope this post inspires you and your household to start a conversation about how you can instill modesty in your precious children. And don't forget the power of prayer!

Mae

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A Home for The Burkes: We Hit a Road Block

So a few months ago, I let you in on a little secret. We had started making plans to move to Rockport. And while I was telling myself over and OVER again, "Don't get your hopes up, Mae. It might not work out."

Well, for one reason or an other, the house is not up for grabs any more. So we will NOT be moving to Rockport this summer. But after months of coming to terms with how much better it would be for our family, we have decided that this is something we want to work towards.

Cons of not moving this summer:
  • We won't be getting the immediate support of our family who would be so close.
  • We will still be in our apartment.
  • We already un-committed to going on our grand road trip across country with the Brownings :[
  • I won't get to start my photography business. I refuse to try to compete with the amazing photographers we have here, many who are our friends. I have had this passion for some time now, but it seemed like the "bandwagon" so to speak, was overflowing, competitive, and sometimes-really mean. I couldn't even take my camera to a good friend's wedding this past weekend because I didn't want to "step on the photographer's toes." [Even though I have ZERO interest in shooting weddings.] I'll be doing a post soon enough on why I have fallen in love with this artform.
  • Most importantly- we're unsure of where that puts us for expanding our family. We could proceed to grow our family and use our amazing birth team but not have the help of family. Or we could try to hold off until we get to Rockport

Pros of not moving this summer:
We don't have to move this summer! Haha. We have moved every summer since we graduated highschool, and are sick and tired of it, lol. Although, if Eamon finds a new job [PLEASE, JESUS!] that makes it easier for us to be a family and requires us to move locations in the DFW, or our current apartments try to screw us over when we renew our lease, we may have to move. Again, I just wish I knew.
We've sorta made a family here of our own. It's not where we'd like it to be, but we've really started making connections- FINALLY!
I won't have to uproot my garden, hehe. I know that's lame, but I felt really sad that I wasn't going to keep up my garden all summer.
Most importantly- Eamon and I may get to fulfill a committment that we made with the Lord when we got married. We came home from our wedding and stood in our kitchen, vowing to God that we would stay in one place for two years. We were kidna forced out of that, and it still eats at us. So, if we don't end up moving for any other reason, we will get to live out that committment. It really relieves my heart.

So we will be staying, getting to know some of you more and more, and finding our purpose here- which is slowly being revealed as learning contentment.

I hope you all have a great evening and thanks to all of those who entered the contest!
Mae

AND THE WINNER IS....

Hannah Tallo!

Woo hoo! Random.org picked number four, which is you my friend! I know you'll love it!

I will be back later tonight [I PROMISE!] with some updates on what is is next on the Burke family adventures...

Mae

Monday, May 10, 2010

101 BLOG POSTS! Cafe Medi GIVEAWAY!

I can't believe it, but this is my 101st blog entry here on "Mother, Mae I?"!

We had a ton going on this weekend, so I didn't even have a CHANCE to update. There was our mini Mother's Day celebration at Central Market, one of my old roomie's wedding, and my very first newborn shoot!

What do you mean, "what do you mean, newborn shoot?"
Well my friends, I have jumped in to the photography world. In my stubborness, regardless of what it takes, we WILL be moving to Rockport. Rockport, and the surrounding Coastal Bend, unlike DFW isn't overly saturated with photographers, and there aren't any birth photographers. The market is wide open, and I'll be able to finally pursue a passion of mine that I have yet to have the opportunity to explore.
Wanna see that precious newborn? Go here to check it out. [And don't forget to follow me! ;]

Which leaves me to entice you to enter my amazing giveaway.

$20 Gift Card to Cafe Medi!

Now, I know some of you have no idea what or where this is, but do you really think I'd lead you down the wrong culinary path?

Cafe Medi is a local Greek/Mediteranean resturaunt that I get cravings for on a bi-weekly basis. Hummus? Amazing. Falafel? Amazing. Spanikoptia, shawerma, gyros, green beans? Amazing, amazing, amazing, AMAZING! Lunch time is the perfect time for family, and their lunch menu is far from wimpy! As a matter of fact, the last time we went, Lily sat in her highchair eating all of my green beans, half of our hummus, and even snuck a piece of pita [ninja baby]! At dinner the lights, are dim, the guests are overly fascinated at how cool they are for being awesome, and the waiters put on a show any chance they get. On a busy night you can here/yell OPA! a dozen times before your meal is over, customary when the waitress egnites the flaming cheese :] It is my most favorite date spot to go with my man.


SO here's how to enter:
1. Leave a comment with what you'd like to see more of on my blog
2. Leave a comment saying you're now a follower of Mother, Mae I?
3. Tweet about it and leave a comment with you screen name.
4. Blog about it on your own blog and leave a comment with the link to the entry.
5. Share it on Facebook and leave a comment.

There is a limit of five entries per day and the winner will be announced on Wednesday morning! Good luck!

I'll be back later this evening with Meal Plan Monday :]
Mae

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Cinco De Mayo

On Eamon's lunch break, we all went to the pool for the first time this year! Lily thought the water was just too cold, and we have some very cute pictures to share. And I tell you what, girlfriend got TAN! We were only out there for 20 minutes, TOPS!

This was her face for the first five minutes:


Then I got her to warm up, but just a little bit, lol!


Here's some [rather adorable!] video:

video

Then Kissy and Tex came over. I think we may make a habbit of getting together weekly, just bc we love each other, that'd be awesome!



Mmmm...and then there was dinner.
I had to tweak my jambalaya recipe to something more suitable for this Mexican holiday. First, what was I gonna do with all the black eyed peas I soaked?

I'll tell you what! A wonderful, fresh new take on rice and beans. Black eyed peas with brown rice, stewed tomatoes, some spices and cilantro. Yuuuum...


And what about all that wonderful shrimp that we bought the day before? Well, marinade it in orange, lemon, and lime juice with red onions, cilantro, and chili powder of course!


This is the finished product, a bit more work than I usually do, but it was SO worth it!


Eamon made virgin margarita's for the first time. I totally see the appeal in these now. It like a salty slushie!


And FINALLY, dessert. OHMUHGOODNESS. Avocados split, seeded, peeled all as a vessel for red bean ice cream and cinnamon sugar, drizzled with chocolate. I died. Really, stone cold death. It's a miracle I'm talking to you today. So that definitely surpassed my refined sugar quota for the wee...month.



And, if you can't guess it, all of this Mexican food gave me insane, stressful, nightmares. It reinforced my decision to NOT have a Mexican night at our house.

---hehehe! Lily just brought me the jar of dried mangos to give one to her. THAT was freakin adorable.

Hope you all had a great day yesterday, and an even better one today!
Mae

Monday, May 3, 2010

Meal Plan Monday

We've had a very, very busy day today!
Lots of cleaning, prepping, digging in the garden. But it's been good!

Here's what I got from the garden today to have with dinner tonight and lunch tomorrow!
Isn't it beautiful? :] SO excited for the next bunch to grow.

Thanks to our AMAZING friend, Heather, our family now has a dehydrator! I've been experimenting like crazy. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!

SO, here's what we are cookin this week :]

****OHMYGOSH for about 3 minutes I couldn't find my meal plan...I almost died. I do meal plans by the month...FOUND IT!****

Breakfasts:
Lily:
  • Steamed egg yolks [go here to see more on how to prepare]
  • Fruit or veggies steamed
E&M:
  • Steamed eggs with fruit
  • Omlet with homemade soaked wheat rolls
  • Soaked Oatmeal
  • Soaked Muesli
  • Soaked Panckakes [SO good, we served them last week with Amish butter and raw, local honey and steamed fruits. It was very filling! We used the recipe right out of NT because I didn't really like most of the ones I found online]
  • Soaked Dutch Baby Pancakes [So far, this is Eamon's favorite "soaked" recipe]
***any recomendations to make this not so runny/griddy/DONE in the middle?
  • Fried Eggs with Homemade yogurt

Lunches:
  • Salad w/pan fried fish [talapia, flounder, or salmon]
  • Fish [the same mentioned above] with brown rice and steamed veggies
  • Hummus plate [chic peas soaked for 24 hours and cooked in the crockpot over night. VERY tedious, but noticeably tastier.

Snacks
  • Laver [nori]
  • Fruit/veggies
  • dehydrated fruits and veggies
  • sweet potato fries
  • Yogurt
  • brown rice crackers [Lily is LOVING these]
Dinners:
Monday: Roasted veggies with macarroni and salad

Tuesday: To the Brownings for supper and Lost [there was NO Lost last week and no one told us, there were riots in the streets I tell you].

Wednesday: Persian Black Eyed Peas

Thursday: Fried brown rice with shrimp

Friday: Creamy Tomato Soup with Israeli cous-cous.

Saturday: Pizza [the regular crust is back after being berated by E about tampering with our "perfect pizza dough"...]

Sunday: Angel Hair pasta with feta and broccoli.


What's going on in your kitchen this week?

PS
Thank you all so much for the encouraging comments, emails, and phone calls concerning my last post. It was overwhelmingly sweet :]

Mae

Saturday, May 1, 2010

16 Year Old Maegan VS 20 Year Old Mae, How I Found My Purpose

Today as I was driving around listening to Taking Back Sunday, planning my chore list, dehydrating recipes, diaper schedules and my purpose, I felt a familiar pair of eyes glare at me. Sixteen year old me was judging away, again. She sat in the seat next to me, one foot hanging out the window, hardly able to see through the eyeliner and bangs, shaking her head.

"Who are you?!?"

I felt...shamed.
What did she know? She's never been outside her spoiled little beach town. She wasn't even planning to be alive, yet alone live. Why should I let her look down on me?
Because she had big plans, though she didn't want anyone to really know. She was gonna be a college graduate to go on and teach underprivileged youth how to play music. She was gonna organize protests, write scathing letters to the New York Times, only to be offered her own column. She was gonna travel the world with her college graduate husband who was taking time off from teaching music theory at Oxford. We'd feed the poor, eat exotic foods, make passionate love with no consequences, and take on the world, one LP at a time.

I heard her first "tisk, tisk" when I dropped out of college. I told her, my family, my friends, my employers, co-workers, casual strangers, and myself over and over again "God told me to!" And no matter how many times He reassured me, her nay-saying stuck.
Then, after negative pregnancy test after negative pregnancy test, she rejoiced. Leaping for joy screaming "HELLO!?! WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING?!?" Get you're butt back in school and stop acting crazy. You're 19, you can't have A BABY!"
After Lily was born, she softened...but just a little "Oh, she's SO cute! Now that you're home all the time, get a sitter and get online! You're too smart to just sit there."

But once she started to manifest herself in other people in my life, I started to call her bluff. Several of my friends started to point out that the majority of my highschool class is pregnant, engaged, married, or a combination of any two. And it started to anger me. As if it was something to scoffed at. An old mentor started to change her tone saying that she was glad her kids finished college because they aren't having to go through what we are...[what?] These things started to seem more and more ridiculous.

Today I shut her up and started to ask the questions. While I was slicing fruits for our dehydrator, she raised her finger to wag and I shut her down. After years of growing further and further apart, I finally asked the one question that mattered "Why are we so different?!?"
And the answer came immediatly.
Jesus.
Sixteen year old Maegan didn't have Jesus. She didn't have purpose, and she didn't know love. Sure, she was ambitious, drivin, and determined, but her wisdom was enormously limitted.


All of this has re-affirmed what the Lord has been teaching me the past few weeks: my purpose. During our bible study a few weeks ago, the author of our book led us through an incredibly hard challange; pray through our personal purpose statement. Eamon laughed when I told him "I need to be alone for about an hour, I'm gonna figure out my life" and truth be told, so did I!
But through this, I came to some amazing truth for my life, that will help shape our purpose statement for our family.
I've been debating on sharing this with my readers, but after talking with 16 year old Maegan, I felt like I should ;] Accountability, confession, praise, are all reasons why I want to let you in on this. And who knows, maybe this can be some inspiration for you!
As I began to pray, I asked the Lord to reveal some scripture to me that are specific to my heart, my purpose. Without even finishing my sentence, Proverbs 31:10- 31 came to mind.

"10Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
11The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
12
She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
13
She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.
14
She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar.
15
She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat t
o her household, and a portion to her maidens.
16She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.
17
She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
18She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
19
She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
20
She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.
21
She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.
22
She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth am
ong the elders of the land.
24
She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
25Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
26She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
27
She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
28Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
29
Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
30
Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates."

I prayed over and over for the Lord to be clear. I love this verse, and was wondering whether or not this was my decision, not His. But He confirmed.
He then pointed me over, and over again for about 30 minutes to Titus 2: 3-5

3Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, F)">(F)not malicious gossips nor G)">(G)enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good,
4so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children,
5to be sensible, pure, H)">(H)workers at home, kind, being I)">(I)subject to their own husbands, J)">(J)so that the word of God will not be dishonored.

This was very daunting. This is who I am to be. To be a teacher, having my passion confirmed. WHEW!
Then I had Him lead me through a prayer, and what happened next was an absolutely goosebump inducing experience that I am longing for in every prayer I have with Him. His prayer for my life was a parable of gardening...HOW FREAKIN COOL?!? So, I'll leave you with what I wrote that night.

Father,
I ask that you break* down all expectations I have for myself, my family, my friends, and of You. I ask that you grow* my heart for the contentment of simplicity, cleaning my home and heart of blinding clutter. I pray for nourishment* in my home through wholesome food, receiving only what is good for our bodies, as our hearts receive only Your word. I pray my knowledge of you blossoms*, allowing me to teach Your word to my chidren and the women in my life. I pray that I will be capable of loving unconditionaly by the time Your bounty has come to harvest*.
As I wrote this, a very specific vision came to mind:
Break- The Lord tilling, and breaking the soil unearthing the good nutriant on the top soil
Grow- a sprouted sead that requires specific Sun and
Nourishment- water being poured over the sprout resulting in...
Blossoms- the first sign of fruit that will be ripe in the Spirit
Harvest- hefty, full, vibrant fruit, worthy of God's praise


What has He shown you for your life? Have you ever taken the time to find out? Do you have a similar experience? Would the sixteen year old you approve? ;] Tell me all about it
Mae