pinhole press : surprise your sweetie!

Hawk and I were married almost five years ago, but we don't have a single photo from the event in our house. I hear that's pretty common these days because the experience of wedding photography often limits what a couple can afford to purchase later. Gone are the days of prints stuck in a photo album--now newlyweds have so much more to choose from.

I'm sure you know I've been a fan of Pinhole Press for years now, long before they joined the blog as a sponsor. We've made the grandparents albums of their time with the kids, a memory game, holiday cards, and now, my personal favorite, a wedding album!

I chose the 61-photo panoramic book with the classic khaki cloth spine. I've drooled over it for more than a year but this Valentine's Day, I'm finally going to give my sweetheart an heirloom we can enjoy now.

Hey, that's a great way to describe this book. An heirloom. There are many photobooks to choose from out there, but Pinhole Press gives us something unique. This is good quality: it feels good in my hands, pages fall open completely and photos are bright and sharp, the pages are smooth as a baby's bum, and the cloth spine is pressed perfectly.

Look at the detail and quality of the spine.
This Valentine's Day, Pinhole Press is offering thishawksnest readers a 10% discount! It need not be a particular Valentine's gift, as long as the order is placed before February 14th.

For example, we also picked up their brilliant 12-piece puzzle. Our kids love puzzles, and now that we're 2000 miles from home, we thought we'd use one of the latest pics of Hawks parents & siblings as a loving reminder of our roots.
The cutouts are simple and precise, and as you can see, the image retains its quality.
 And here it is, pieced together by our eldest.
Let us know if you grab something from Pinhole Press! You love it immediately, and it will be the gift that keeps on giving, passed around from hand to hand, time to time.




Back in high school I learned the drinking game, Cups, to go along with Rich Mullins' Screen Door. Yes, I was a total youth group junkie my senior year.

So it makes me really happy to see what Anna Kendrick has done with the it. I have a running playlist of songs I associate with motherhood and my relationship with my kids. Ho Hey, Strawberry Swing, and Brandi Carlisle's The Story are just a few on the list, and this is the newest. For the one person out there who hasn't seen this, enjoy.

*I especially like the duo's faces, the triplet's magnificence, and the one slip-up from the 'bartender' which is so much like real life...almost perfect, and better for the almost.


The Most Embarrassing Photo I've Posted

Is this one:

This photo captures everything about my life lately. When I shot it, I was laughing and weeping (maybe sobbing). It's hilarious and wonderful that I have these two children, these two specific, particular, unique and glorious lives in my own humble life, and that they want to be with me wherever I go, whatever I'm doing. It is glorious. It is awe-inspiring. No animal or friend comes close to the glory of these two children. This girl, this boy.

And still.

You can see in the first pic that I have no privacy. They're not just in the room, they're practically in my lap. One wants to read a book. The other wants to play trucks. Gosh, I'm laughing as I write this remembering how ridiculous it was, but at the moment it was taken, I was also very, very broken. Tired. Tapped-out. In need of a sanctuary. I'm glad I had enough sense of humor that I could appreciate how ridiculous it was, but I was still crying.

Which brings me to the topics of sleep and self-sacrifice.

I've since come to understand that the single most influential factor in my peace of mind, in my ability to be a good wife and mother, is sleep. If I am rested, I can tackle anything with joy, patience, self-control, and rational thought. If I have not had rest, I am an emotional wreck. I can't handle the lack of privacy. I can't handle the constant, appropriate needs my children have or the expectations my husband places on his stay-at-home spouse. I act out in ways I am ashamed, and I can't be a proactive, joyful person providing for the needs of the family I love.

The reality of being pregnant and having two very young children means that a lot of my own desires are on hold. Some moms describe this as a compromise, but I see it as a pure and obvious sacrifice. Compromise means everybody is only partially happy, and partially dissatisfied. Sacrifice means letting go and giving in to something more important, a total surrendering and giving away what I want for myself at this time, and the total act of giving it up is more fulfilling than the partial.

And what do I want for myself? I want to have an extremely decluttered and organized house in which EVERYthing has a place and is in its place. I'm sold on that mindset after organizing my pantry and our coat closet; it's the key to peace of mind in the house. Oh, and I want to:

  • blog daily
  • set the new dresser's hardware, add contact paper to the drawers, and fill it with their belongings. Oh, and put it in an actual bedroom instead of the basement.
  • paint Poppy's room and ceiling
  • stamp the hallway ceiling
  • build a wardrobe for Hawk in our MBR
  • install and paint moulding in our MBR
  • sew, sew, sew things like pillow casings, teepees, a-frame tents, maternity dresses, and children's clothes. And curtains.
  • paint numbers on the stairs
  • tear down the upper west shelving in our small galley kitchen, rewire the lights, replaster, and install open shelving
  • install the brand new beautiful lights we purchased for our kitchen and hallway (they're so cool!)
  • switch the cribs
  • reorganize the basement into beautiful storage and particular play spaces, a sewing/craft area, woodworking area, clear laundry area, etc.

And did I tell you I have a little dream on the back burner? Something that could take this blog in a new direction, make it more than a hobby? Well, I bet I haven't told you because I have to put it on hold. And there's a grace there. I haven't been able to paint Poppy's room, and I recently realized that instead of going a cream-gray, I want to do the walls pure cream and paint the ceiling with a Farrow & Ball pink. Yup, you read that correctly. Similarly, I haven't been able to pursue some ventures I've longed to pursue, and this has made me realize that by sacrificing those dreams, I can spend time discerning, praying, and learning about what I really want to do so when I take action, it is for the right end.

So the things I love are severely on hold until this baby arrives and our family starts to settle. I hope that the long view will warrant these short pitfalls. I know they will.

with deep gratitude for your faithfulness, readers,



Happy Mother's Day

I haven't posted in a while and I'll touch on more of that later next week, but this is totally worth watching. I hesitate to call many things inspirational, but this is.


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