I talked myself into believing that I was satisfied with two kids. They were beautiful and healthy and I should be happy for what God had given me and my husband. As a young girl I had always imagined myself with four or even six children, I enjoyed the thought of a big family. But because of society, outside influences and someone asking me “Why would you want them to outnumber you?!” I began to feel foolish and crazy for wanting a big family.

Almost exactly a year ago a wrote a blog post about a goal that I hoped to accomplish by January of 2019! Read it here. I focused so much on that goal but quickly realized that I needed to accomplish a whole lot more in my faith, on myself and on my family in order to accomplish anything so big.

When we moved to this house in June of 2016 I was determined to find my faith family. I wanted a church that my family could be part of and grow in. I hadn’t gotten Madelyn baptized yet and she was almost three at the time. It is customary for Catholics to baptize their children a few months after birth. When she was six months old I took the class for parents wanting to baptize their children and realized I didn’t have anyone in my life that could help me raise my children in the Catholic faith except my mom. My husband is not Catholic, which makes this task even harder. In May of 2018 we baptized Madelyn on Mother’s Day. It was the most joyous moment of my year. Read more about it here. Since this accomplishment we as a family have grown leaps and bounds in our faith. I teach second grade faith formation and Ryan volunteers as cook for family days after church. He had also gotten involved in a faith sharing group for men on Friday mornings that meets at 5:30am!! As a family we have joined a small group with other families at church and created amazing friendships with great families. We have also joined family choir. This year at Christmas my girls participated in the Children’s Mass nativity reinactment. I was so proud. Our whole Christmas season had been so focused on our faith and the birth of our savior. Read more here. Ryan is to compete the RCIA program this year by Easter so that he will become a true member of the church.

Madelyn’s godparents, our God Family
Stay. Simon and Jude Arise group/church leaders

As we were discovering our faith I realized my deep urge to have more children. In finally found the courage to bring it up to my husband. I had this preconceived assumption that my husband did not want children with me because of our difficulty in our relationship while pregnant with my first two children. As we talked we discovered the root of our problems during those pregnancies were my lack of sleep and communication. I worked nights while pregnant and taking care of my oldest. I never slept which had horrible effects on my health mentally and physically. We decided I would become a full-time mommy and stay home with my girls when my youngest was 3 months old. I also never communicated my feelings to my husband about my aggrevation towards his lack of participation. We both didn’t know what to do, I just expected him to know to carry heavy things while I was pregnant and to show concern over me. I thought: “I should not have to ask him or tell him what is needed.” But I really do and I should not make him feel bad for not knowing what to do. Since our first two children we have read alot of books on self improvement and marriage and have come to realize that communication is lacking in every relationship. Here is a list of books that have helped us live our best life. We agreed that we would try for another child and are happily expecting a baby next month, February 25th, 2019.

We have always wanted to homeschool even before our big 2019 lifestyle goal but in order to make that goal happen we needed to get a head start on learning to homeschool. Learning to homeschool was more than just signing up for workbooks and a curriculum, it took many changes to our lifestyle in order to clear our plates for this big undertaking. I reluctantly closed my shop Mari-Mac Designs and stopped my work as blogger and social media manager with local non-profits. I needed to start saying “no” to others and and “yes” to our goal. I needed to learn about the different approaches to homeschooling in particular my approach and how to fit teaching my kids into our lifestyle. After weeks of crying about how I was the worst homeschooling parent in history I finally reached out to other homeschooling mommas. I discovered Charlotte Mason and have been learning about her method ever since. She teaches the individual child and encourges them to fall in love with learning and discovery through nature walks and living books. My girls already have a curiosity of discovering the world around them, it was up to me to expound on that curiosity for their education.

We have been so blessed that 2018 has given us so many lessons to prepare us for our next journey. We learned that we are in complete charge of our happiness and that it is completely acceptable to stay away from activities and people that do not encourge our growth. We also learned that we need to spend more time with those people that lift us up and accept us for who we are and how we choose to live. We hope you will continue to follow us on our adventures!

Happy and successful 2019 friends!



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