spring

Apr 29th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 2 min read

It’s the time of year for new possibilities. . I saw a friend this past weekend I had not seen in something like 18 years. It was so good to get a hug from her, meet her kids, hear a little about her life now. . I overheard two conversations this past weekend that I wanted to jump into and offer my opinion. Share how…

broken

Apr 8th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 2 min read

We are about a year out from this “transition year”. It’s been one hell of a roller-coaster. We’ve said goodbye to a job, a church, a beloved dog, an Aunt, a cousin, sent friends halfway around the world, started two new jobs, and transitioned a child from tween to teen. I had visions of what life would feel like a year out from all of…

grief

Mar 18th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 1 min read

It has been a season of loss for us. A long season. Like the bleak winter that seems to never end. There are days of sunshine to warm your face, but they fade quickly. The sun hiding its face once again behind the clouds. . It is wearing on me. I’ve felt it more these past few months than I did before. As if it…

darkness

Mar 11th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 4 min read

At the beginning of February, I had coffee with a friend. Last year was one hell of a year for both of us. We sat with our warm beverages and sweet treats and mourned what the last year meant for us. We commiserated over how long, dark, cold, and bleak February is. She told me she recently found a book a loved one had given…

kids

Mar 5th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 2 min read

I read this book Grace Based Parenting by Tim Kimmel for the first time probably nine years ago, I’ve read it again several times, seven years ago I quoted him on Facebook. When I did that I had no forethought into what it would mean to me when it would pop up seven years later. I had no idea we would be halfway through middle school with the…

lost

Feb 24th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 2 min read

I’ve started losing things. It’s very unlike me. I’m usually the finder in the house. Skyler lost a pair of shoes, which in and of itself is ridiculous when you were a size 10 1/2 men’s, but regardless, it happened. Even I couldn’t find them. It took us close to a week to locate them. I lost my house keys two weeks ago. I lost…

workmanship

Feb 18th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 3 min read

A running theme for me over the last several years has been food and entertaining. I set a goal to invite more people into our home and cook them good food. I did ok with inviting people over, not as well as I would have liked, but better than it had been before that. The big change happened when my brother started eating a meal…

hiding

Feb 14th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 3 min read

I was organizing pictures on my computer a few days ago. The boys came in and wanted to scroll through old pictures. I knew my weight had fluctuated a lot in the last 9 years and in 2017 I realized I had a problem. After Gideon was born, I lost all the baby weight and then some. I had changed my eating, joined the gym,…

memory

Feb 7th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 5 min read

I’ve been struggling to write this post. I’ve been struggling with this part of our story, quite honestly, for a long time. It’s part of our story I hate to say aloud. It’s part of our story I feel people don’t believe, or don’t get, or can’t comprehend. I want to feel validated and until recently I didn’t. Perhaps it was through the validation of…

gavyn

Jan 19th, 2019 A Year on The Porch arstanley 3 min read

Did I ever tell you the story of me picking a fight with someone while wearing this shirt? True story. . Last year on our drive to Florida we stopped for lunch after spending ten hours in the van. As I got the food something happened between Ryan and the boys causing Gavyn to lose his ever loving mind. I came around the corner to…