Let's Be Honest

Life (Before the "Shake Up")

Draw a line with me. 



Where would you put your line? 


We all have a line in our lives. A line that separates the life we lived before and after a "Shake Up" moment. 


A "Shake Up" moment is that moment in your history where time tends to slow down and speed up all at once. It's a moment that changes everything. A moment that we either relish in or recoil from. 


Most "Shake Up" moments aren't positive.  


I could probably name some of these defining moments in those who are closest to me.  


For my husband, his "Shake Up" moment was collapsing twice in a period of nine months, without warning, in 2014/2015. 


I can guess my parents moments quite accurately. They've had more than one each.  



For me, there's life before anxiety/panic and life after. 


I won't lie to you, I still find myself trying to pull myself back to that "Shake Up" moment with a giant eraser. My attempts to remove it from my life are futile, at best. It's just there. This big red, fat reminder that I used to be "x,y,z" and now I can't even sit comfortably at a restaurant for twenty minutes without nearly jumping out of my skin.  


Where do you find yourself right now? If your "Shake Up" moment was positive, well, I guess you don't think much about going back. Instead, you're rapidly running thru life towards the next "Shake Up" moment. Next time, life may not be so friendly. 


If you're like me, you may find that you have a heightened sensitivity to what life was before the "Shake Up". Tangible reminders of life before are hard to take in. Photos, videos, trinkets, and mental treasures seem like they were from another life, another galaxy, even. 



But do we really, deep down, want to go back?!




Maybe so.  


And maybe not.  


But we do.  As long as we could take the beauty we've acquired on this side of the "Shake Up" with us.


I don't know. I wish I really knew what I really wanted.  


I want the past to be the present, with the current present to stay present. I want them blended like a smoothie. With extra mango. 


Its hard. It's hard to not let the "Shake Up" moments define us. Because, they certainly leave their mark on our lives.



How do you deal with your "Shake Up" moment(s)? Do you find it hard to keep moving forward? Do you look back too often and long for what used to be? Share with me below! 



For the love of Reading.

One of my favorite activities to do with my daughter is sitting down in our living room and reading books together. Growing up my mom has countless photos of me reading my favorite books and now I see that same image when I take a photo of my daughter as she attempts to flip pages, chew on covers and climb over the towers of books we have. 

Little Sarah Reading

Little Sarah Reading

Walking into book stores is a serious struggle for me and gosh, there is something about children's books that gets me caught in Barnes and Noble for hours. So when my friend, Megan, invited me to her Usborne book party I couldn't help but be excited for a party in my pajamas at home and the chance to see lots and lots of new and exciting kids books. 

Now, I'm not trying to sell these books to you or push you to join Usborne, this is just my real and honest experience in buying their books and how I fell more in love with children's books after I hosted my own party. 

"Usborne and Kane Miller books are the most exciting, engaging, and educational books on the market today. They are high-quality, innovative, lavishly-illustrated, and best of all, they are the books kids love to read. Choose from over 1,800 bright, colorful, and fun titles covering a wide variety of subjects."

"Usborne and Kane Miller books are the most exciting, engaging, and educational books on the market today. They are high-quality, innovative, lavishly-illustrated, and best of all, they are the books kids love to read. Choose from over 1,800 bright, colorful, and fun titles covering a wide variety of subjects."

When looking for books for my daughter I am always on the lookout for fun and educational books. I love learning and I love a well illustrated book. When these two are combined its hard for me to set down the book and walk away. A majority of the Usborne books help children learn new skills and attain new knowledge. They are durable and I love the bright and colorful illustrations in each of their books and this is why it took me almost 2 hours to pick out the books I wanted to buy Eleanor. They not only have babies buts but books for all kids which is great because I know we will be buying some more of these books as Ellie grows up.

Im going to share with you our top 4 books I got from hosting a party. It was great because I paid so little for all of them and I absolutely LOVE each one I got (and so does Ellie) 

One of our favorites is "That's Not my Princess" It is great because Eleanor loves touchy feely books and the book is full of bright pictures and catches her attention. 

The next book we got that is hard to put down is Garden Sounds. This book is full of pretty birds chirping, bees buzz and rain pitter pattering. What drew me to this book was that the sounds are really pretty and don't get annoying! They have little cutouts throughout the book that Ellie loves to feel and she enjoys listening to the different sounds.

Baby's Very First Play Book Animal Words and Farm words are two books full of cut outs and finger trails, bright beautiful pictures that help children understand and recognize different animals and farm words. I loved it because I am not a fan of lift the flap books. Most of my experience with them is children ripping them off. This book is just finger trails and cutouts for little ones like Ellie so that she can play and I know when Im giving her the book it wont be destroyed in a matter of moments.

The last book I'm going to gush on is Baby's very first slide and see: Under the Sea. This book is so unique and I never saw anything on the market like it. Each page has a fun sliding aspect that creates a new, fun experience when reading together. Eleanor is too little to do the sliding part, but she loves watching the pages change and see the book come alive.

I seriously could go on and tell you about each book in our library, not just Usborne books, and why I love each of them. Reading is so important, it helps our kids learn listening skills, stimulates their imagination, and helps them get a love for learning at a young age. Plus it's a fun activity to do together.

Hope you enjoyed learning about some new books!

Have a great Monday! 


**Today on Instagram Stories I will be showing the Garden Sounds Book and Noisy Nursery Rhymes book. So head on over and follow us @honestlymotherhood so you can get see these books in action. You can also go to Megan's Blog to find out more about Usborne books and how you can purchase them if you are interested.** 

Because the Sh*t Will (Eventually) Hit the Fan

I'm so worn out by the way we do motherhood. 

And I'm realizing that there should've been a tenth chapter in my book (I already published). 

If I could go back, I would call it "Embracing One Another".



You see, there's this huge burden on my heart lately. An old elementary school friend of mine has been in the hospital for the entirety of 2017. With her son. Who has only ever known hospital walls. 

And this son of hers, precious, beautiful, perfect child, has an extremely rare form of epilepsy that could, honestly, be terminal for this little guy. 

And yet, all around me, I see mothers go about bashing and critiquing and correcting and chastising and beating one another down. 

Oh, not so much in person, but "cowardly-style", behind our thumbs and screens. 

(There's probably some of you that are still hung up over my almost use of the "s" word in my title. Some "hypocrite Christian she is".)

We're cruel. We're brutal. We're about making sure that everyone knows that this motherhood thing can't be done any better than the way we're doing it. 

(I should know. I used to be one of them. But with experience, comes wisdom.)

And then this world has women, mothers that are literally going through hell on earth, and they'd do just about anything to get out of it. 

We seem to be so consumed about one-upping those Pinterest Darlings, that we forget that we are all human beings, with real trials, and challenges, and, yes, even feelings. 

There aren't any "safe spaces" for motherhood. (Although, a lot of you may say that Target counts).

Because aren't we all trying here? 

Isn't this gig hard enough? 

I mean, maybe we aren't trying our best all of the time. Maybe, in fact, we are barely ever trying our best. I know I don't.

Maybe our best is just in the trying. And maybe that mother that feels completely guilty for not being as blog-worthy as the next mom, just needs you to say to her that it's just right. She's doing motherhood just right. 

The sh*t always will hit the fan. It just will. There's an endless supply, if you haven't noticed yet. (Story of your life, eh?)

And maybe the walls are covered in the room you're standing in. Maybe you feel like you're the only one that can clean this mess up, but in reality, it's too much for one person. 

We need to be cleaning one another's walls. Lifting each other up. Embracing one another. Showing up and doing. Encouraging. Loving. Being. Looking. 

Looking for opportunities to pray for, come alongside, give breaks, love on, and listen to other mothers. 

Just think of one thing. 

Just one. 

And do it. Words. Deeds. Living and Breathing together. 

Because it's all hard. It's so hard by itself. Life adds the extra. 

So, be the extra-takers. 

Love, ae.