Welcome! I'm Angela. This is my little corner of the web where I write about my adventures as a boy mom. I love my husband and my kids and coffee and all things chocolate. I'm a horrible cook but I love reading recipes. I am currently teaching my five year old how to read and the importance of hygiene. My other boy is currently teething, so I may sound a little sleep deprived at times. We're a homeschooling, slightly crunchy bunch. We're a little cooky but we sure do love being a family. We can be found down by the river every weekend.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

What it means

It's been a little over a week since the Pulse massacre.
It feels as though Orlando has lost it's innocence.
It feels as though I have lost my right to stay naive, to stay silent about something just because it's controversial and may offend people.

We were in Orlando much of the week. We currently live about thirty miles away, which is nice, because we miss a lot of the traffic. But because that is our hometown, because we lived maybe two minutes from Pulse, for years and years, Orlando still feels like my home. And I love that home.

I explained to Ben that I want to do everything in my power to help those hurting. Not just for a week. From now on.  He was (is) incredibly supportive, and encouraged me to do what is needed.

Some days it looked like packing snacks for folks.
Some days it meant offering a stranger a hug, a smile, an "I'm sorry. I'm so sorry" and crying together.
It meant going down to the memorial sight at the Dr. Phillips center, and truly feeling the magnitude of what has happened. It meant changing my views on police officers. I've always been terrified of them. But this week, I got to thank them. I got to know them by name. I have nothing to fear. They are beautiful people, and they want to help.

It meant speaking up for my gay friends. It meant checking on them, asking them if they are afraid. If I can help them. It meant loving them like they are my equal. Because they are my equal. They always have been. It meant apologizing for never checking on them before.
It meant telling my six year old that we love everyone, even if they believe differently than we do. Maybe especially if they believe differently than we do. It meant bringing my kids with me on my trips down there.
It meant Logan sharing high fives and Legoland stories with two men we met under a stairwell, hiding from the rain. It meant crying with these men and having to answer their questions "Why are you here? Why are you teaching your children to love everyone, even us? This is highly controversial, you know you're going to get crap for this. Why? We're strangers!" and not fully having an answer, just hugs and more tears and "We are just wanting to love everyone right now" answers.

It meant attending a candle light vigil with 50,000 people. With the kids. It was terrifying. It was beautiful. I am so grateful I listened to that voice that said "Go" instead of hiding at home, afraid of the flack I'd get for being under so many rainbow flags.
It meant having to answer questions that are incredibly uncomfortable. About politics. About Christianity. It meant having peace in my heart that we were right where we were supposed to be, that God never left my side, that he gave me the peace I needed to do bold things, things that would have terrified me a year ago.

It meant friends not understanding, and parting ways with me.
It meant feeling sad about it, but knowing not to apologize for my heart.

It still means so many things.
I still want to be there, with hurting people, to help them feel a little better about painful situations.
I don't 100% know what it all means.
I simply ask for your patience and understanding while I attempt to figure it all out.

You are loved, friends.

Friday, May 6, 2016

On homeschooling

At least five times a day, my chest gets tight and I think that perhaps I am a little bit crazy for homeschooling my boy. These mini panic attacks stem from comments people give me at the grocery store, a well-meaning but uninformed relative who just doesn't like this lifestyle choice, and sometimes just my own obsessive need to research what the internet world is saying about it all.

We had a fabulous first year. Logan was homeschooled under a tiny private school. We are transferring to another private school for the fall, one with a co-op and field trips and weekly P.E. days. It's about an hour away, but worth it for the socialization and the support (for me!) and the private school records.

But back to Kindergarten. Logan knocked it out of the park. He's reading aloud, he's doing math like it's his job, and he can tell you all about the life-cycle of a frog. We had a co-op with our church buddies every Wednesday, and another homeschool S.T.E.A.M class at the library on Fridays, and the other days we did a lot at home. We started a garden and a compost bucket, learned bible verses and state capitals, and went on many trips to the zoo. It was great and it was exhausting.

First grade scares me more. He's getting older, he's losing teeth and developing opinions and crushes and I am terrified of somehow messing up school for him. I've researched pros and cons of homeschooling through the county verses homeschooling through a private school, made my decision only to retract it and make the opposite decision, and I'm finally realizing that no matter what my choices as a parent, there will be pros and cons.

I am aware that as a homeschool mom, I am not allowed to make spelling errors. I am constantly representing homeschooling, which is fine to me, although sometimes the southern girl in me slips out and I start dropping g's off of the end of my words. That's not really allowed when you're telling the cashier that yes, homeschooling is legal and yes, you are qualified to do this (I will show anyone my college transcripts if they don't believe me. No shame here. There was a time when I wore my GPA like a badge of honor. I feel really sad about that, but that's what your twenties are for, right? Doing things you'll later shake your head at?).

All in all, I am thankful for homeschooling, even if it causes my heart to palpitate about once an hour and even if my walls are covered in anchor charts. I get more time with my kids, more chances to make their meals and hold them when they cry and pray with them every morning. In spite of my fears, it's really good.

Portrait of L courtesy of Sarah Del Rio photography

Thursday, April 28, 2016


This past month has been incredibly heavy. There's no nice way to say it.
One sweet friend had a miscarriage and she cried and I cried.

One friend gave birth to her baby boy only to have him meet Jesus. The memorial service is on Saturday and my heart is broken for her.

One friend is going through a painful divorce.

One family member is suffering with thyroid cancer while she mothers her seven month old.

One friend's family is heartbroken over the drowning of an eleven month old blue eyed boy named Courage.

The list goes on. People are hurting and I am sad and I don't know how to help.

I cannot make the pain go away.

I try to do what people did for me during my hardest days.

Show up.
Buy gifts (Thank you, Jesus for Amazon prime these days).
Cry some more.

The older I get, the more I am realizing that life does not get easier. We get stronger. I hate that, but there's no way around it. There will always be hurt. There will always be pain and loss and sickness in this life.

The best thing we can strive for is to make life a little less heavy.

What you do and say matters to those that are hurting.

Don't let fear stop you from reaching out to the broken.

They need you more than you know.

He heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds. 
Psalm 147:3 

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Here's the good

Every new month of no, I try and try to look for the positives. Though the tests say negative, I look for the good. For years before Logan, and then three more years before Levi, and going on a year once more, I look for the good.

Can I be thankful that it is so damn difficult for us to have children?

Can I be thankful, even if I never get to have another?

Can I be thankful, for five losses and hundreds of dollars on pregnancy tests and crying in the bathroom at baby showers and confusion from doctors and trying my hand at just about every alternative therapy out there?
Where's the good?

Here's the good.

I never, EVER take my boys for granted. My friends often praise me for being so patient with my kids. I am patient with them because for years before they were here, patience was what I learned. I waited, because I had no choice. And that waiting made God's yeses all that much more miraculous. I don't like to complain because I remember the nights in tears, wondering if I'd ever be a mother. And now I am one and it's my favorite thing.

Here's the good.

My body is working. My efforts to get healthy, to eat real food and treat my body well are never wasted, even if there's no baby. Health is a gift, and if my body is a temple, I should be so grateful that it's finally working and that my hard work is paying off.

Here's the good.

I will never complain about morning sickness or weight gain or stretch marks, should God grant me the experience once more. I am sensitive in a way that is only gained from being there myself, time and time again. I will never complain about pregnancy because I know the blood, sweat and tears, the trying and the doubting and the mind games, I know it all. And I know that sometimes a complaining pregnant woman hurts the infertile like nothing else. I am grateful for this struggle because my heart for women has grown in a way it wouldn't have otherwise.

Here's the good.

I have yet another month to hope. I used to hate the word hope. Hope means pain. Hope means disappointment. Better to keep expectations down. But God wants me to hope. He wants me to pray and ask and strive and wait. In fact, he commands it. Look it up.

Here's the good.

Just for today, I will drink the caffeine. Have the glass of wine. Tell myself I am doing the best I can. Because it's true.

For you are my hope, oh Lord God, You are my trust from my youth. Psalm 71:5

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Fasting and Death and January

I broke my Facebook fast on Friday. I found out that one of my high school friends had passed away in his sleep. He was struggling with addiction, but oh he was a kind soul. He was my friend way back when it really wasn't cool to be my friend. He loved Jesus and he struggled. He struggled in a different, more apparent way, and I am heartbroken that he's gone but grateful that Jesus loves all of us, even the addict. If you think of it, please pray for his family. He has two little boys. It's insanely painful to lose your dad, no matter what age you are. So I broke my fast. I went on to pay my respects, to share some memories and a photo from 16 years ago.

January is hard. It feels so cold, and barren, and I'm wondering what in the world is going to grow from this dank, sad month. My connect group has been studying Habakkuk. It starts with a guy basically yelling at God, asking him when he is going to move. When he is going to wake up and make things better. I feel like that sometimes. I don't always see what God is doing. I guess I usually don't. It's easy to feel God when you get a shiny new baby or your husband gets a promotion or a friend tells you how great you're doing at life. But what about the years with no new baby? What about the years when you are quite literally counting the days until pay day? What about when a friend dies in their early thirties?

This is what January feels like. Cold, but no Christmas. Quiet, too quiet, wondering when the miracle will come. Wondering when the joy will show up and surprise us all.

Ann Voskamp likes to say "Eucharisteo always precedes the miracle." We are to keep giving thanks, for the hard, for the incredibly sad, for the winter, for the in between. I am the first to admit that I suck at this sometimes. I retreat, I bury myself in my books and in working out and in seeking out alone time. I want the time to pass quickly because joy is better. Joy is fun and shiny and people celebrate with you. People don't generally celebrate ordinary, sad, January days.

I'm going to try. January gives me this beautiful opportunity to change. I choose today to be grateful for the hard. For the sad quiet. For another month of no.

Spring is coming.

Friday, January 8, 2016

A Week Without It

I mentioned in my last post that for the month of January, I am staying of Facebook and trying hard to focus on the word personal. To stop the comparison and the insecurity and the madness. Ironically, this blog is automatically set to post to Facebook any time I update.

It's been a little over a week, and I've noticed some changes, as well as some habits that seem to be deeply rooted.

 This week, rather than distracting myself with what you've had for lunch, or what restaurants you and your friends are checking into, or how many more of you are pregnant, I've allowed myself to sit with this sadness. I've been really afraid to do so. But I'm learning that I can't run from it, I must face it if I am to conquer it. Ironically, this was the week to take a pregnancy test. Or three. They were all negative.

This week, I've been honest with God. Told him that I feel so very alone in my spiritual journey, and that while I know he's with me, it sure doesn't feel like it. That I feel he's too busy solving the world's problems to listen to my pleas. I've gone on bike rides. People watched. Done yoga. Found solace in cooking and cleaning and even potty training my two year old. I've avoided friends and sat with my stomach aches and wondered where God is when I can't feel him.

I've felt really, really small this week. But I'm learning that this doesn't have to be a bad thing. I'm reminded of the motto from my youth group, many years ago. My youth pastor always used to say "I must decrease so Christ may increase." This week, I've cut out a lot of the junk. The noise that wants to steal my joy. What I am left with is this empty space. I don't know what God is going to do with it. I don't know if he will heal my heart or if I will always be a little bit sad no matter how much I fight for joy. I don't know. I can simply give him this space and wait. And against my better judgement, keep hoping.

Monday, December 28, 2015


Every year around this time, I choose one word that I am going to focus on for the upcoming new year. Last year my word was content, as in, I wanted to become content with the present rather than obsessing with plans for the future or dwelling too much on the past. Full disclosure, that was a really hard one. 2015 was rough. But I remembered my word and carried it around like I needed it.

2016 starts in just a few days (what?!?). I chose my word this morning, after careful thought and prayer. My word will be personal. As in, I am going to try my best to focus on how God loves me personally, rather than obsess and compare with how he is blessing my friends.

Here's some raw honesty. Most women that struggle with infertility, whether they admit it or not, feel the painful sting when loved ones seem to get pregnant easily (and sustain that pregnancy until they birth a healthy baby). Ben and I have struggled with infertility not once, but three times. Years and years. It is our number one struggle in our marriage, hands down. We've lost five pregnancies. I hate talking about it, not because I am embarrassed but because people say hurtful things, and I don't have the thickest skin. But here's my weakness. When it seems so easy for others, and so very hard for us, I doubt God's love for me personally. It's awful, I know. But it's true. I question why my pregnancies fail. I question why hers don't, and I think maybe he loves her more. It's a bitter pill, friends. I just don't want to hurt anymore.

So my experiment for January is to focus on looking for God's love. For me. Not for you. Some days will be harder than others. I have about twenty five friends that are pregnant right now. I need to realize that they are no more special to God than I am. I am deleting my Facebook app, just for January, because I have to stop the comparison madness. I get on that stupid website and am reminded of my failures. I feel less than. Less of a woman. It's dumb and I want to stop the toxic comparing of wombs.

I covet your prayers. I long to know God's love for me. I know it, in my heart and my brain, but I don't always feel it, you know?

Thanks for letting me be so raw. This is tough territory, but I am ready to tackle it. I want to change.

Happy New Year, loves.