our nest

Nest (noun); 1.  a snug, comfortable, or cozy residence or situation; a retreat, or a place of habitual resort.

 

Welcome to our nest!

I’m Jill!

If you’re new to my internet nest or if you’ve been a guest at my real nest, you’ll find my hopes, dreams, design ideas, special needs advocacy, stories about my kids and family, imperfections, spiritual thoughts and; hopefully if I’ve fulfilled my motto in my writing and presence, then you’ll also find acceptance in the individual, joy from sharing in uniqueness and most of all, love.

My real nest will likely be collecting dust bunnies in the corners of the floors, and there is guaranteed to be a pile of laundry waiting to be folded in a basket somewhere (probably in our front hallway).  It will likely be pretty loud (though I am not a loud person), my children are loud and fun, and I am so thankful that my quiet personality is nestled into a loud, somewhat crazy and always cozy nest.  (I forgot to mention above that being cozy is definitely in my wheelhouse too… just ask my kids.  I’m always searching for one of them to be cozy with me.)

My husband, Dan and I started dating in college.  We’ve been together since our first date nearly 16 years ago.    He truly is my rock, my motivator and my best friend.  He keeps me grounded in Faith and brings out my ability to dream and believe in those dreams.

Dan and I have four little nestlings.  Two boys and two girls.  Turbo Man, Tough Guy, Tootsie Pop and Tinker Bell.  No, those aren’t their real names (I know you figured that out, but thought I would specify anyway.  Believe it or not, you will find me calling them these names on occasion).

Turbo is eight years old and our gentle spirit.  He loves sports, reading, math, video games and he’s a great statistician of sports scores.  He plays basketball and baseball and reads better than me.  He is the quiet and gentle leader of the children in our nest.

 

 Tough Guy is six years old.  As you can see, Tough Guy has an enthusiastic spirit.  He loves superheroes, drawing, and plays sled hockey.  He’s also super good at building legos and is very creative.  Tough Guy was born with a complex birth defect that affects 1 in 400,000 children each year.  This includes an abdominal wall defect called an omphalocele, spina bifida and club feet.  He has endured many surgeries and uses a wheelchair due to paralysis from the waist down, but he is strong and tough and doesn’t let anything get in his way.

 

Toostie Pop is three years old.  She is shy when you first meet her, but in the comfortable nest she is our tiny dancer and independent spirit.  She loves pink, sparkles, helping us and lickstick (aka chapstick).   She truly adds sparkle and shine to our nest.  And she’s not afraid to be a leader (or boss around her brothers.)

 

Tinker Bell just turned one and is our sweet, easy going and happy spirit.  Even though having a fourth child has added chaos, noise and less sleep, the love this little Tinker Bell brings is perfect.  She is a happy baby and so sweet and we all adore her.

I am a stay at home mom (former teacher).  I’ve always enjoyed working with kids and I love seeing how they explore the world. Even though as a kid I dreamed of becoming an architect (and began college as an architect major) and I love interiors and design,  helping kids find and embrace their unique gifts is truly what led me to become a teacher.

I began a blog 6 years ago when I was pregnant with Tough Guy and we were navigating the waters of his diagnosis.  I wanted a place where I could update family and friends about his birth, his surgeries and his life.  We had so many people praying for him and wanting to know about his journey.  It was the easiest way to share.  It turned out to also be a space of holiness for me.  Writing became very healing as I processed my new role as a “special needs” momma.

A few years later, I found writing to be challenging as I juggled moving, my oldest starting school, my husband starting a new job and having two more children.  Our lives became busier and I didn’t feel the whisper to write.  But recently I have felt that whisper and I have good reason to write again.

When Tough Guy needed more independence, we moved from our traditional two story home into a new ranch.  We love our new home and neighborhood.  We are blessed to have lots of kids for our children to play with and great neighbors that have become our friends.  I love most parts of the home, especially the main living areas, but some parts of the home were built more for empty nesters than for a family of six, including one wheelchair user.  We have done some things to make it more wheelchair accessible but there are many things to do, to fully make it the most livable it can be for our family.  I’m on a mission to make it fully accessible and I plan to share that with you on this blog.

In the quiet moments of the day when I find them, I write.  I journal and write here; allowing myself to be creative and connected.   I find strength in the love and compassion of Jesus and I am always seeking all the tools to connect my spirit to Him.  I try to be guided most by Hope. Grace.  Kindness.  Compassion. and most of all, LOVE.   I believe the Holy Spirit whispers to us all in different ways, and if we allow ourselves to be still; we will feel that whisper.  Everyday, I seek to feel that whisper.  Some days it pulls me in and I know exactly what I need to do.  Most days, I’m curiously and sometimes impatiently waiting for it to smack me across the head and point me in the right direction.

A few other tidbits about me; I love black tea and chocolate.  I was always shy as a child, but in the comfort of my home and family, I wasn’t.  I always thought I was an introvert, but recently I took an online test and it said I was an ambivert- neither introverted or extroverted; so I guess that’s interesting.  I like cooking, but I really love baking.  Naturally, Christmas and autumn are my favorite time of the year.  (Actually who am I kidding- I love aspects of all four seasons).  Family, a hygge house (if you don’t know what hygge is, I’ll blog more about it later, but in a nutshell; the ultimate cozy feeling), candles and holiday decor make my heart happy.  Summer is fun and so are my kids, but three months of summer break do a number to the quantity of gray hairs on my head.  (Corona, Zac Brown Band and inpromptu hang outs with great friends and family make summer really awesome.)

If you’ve visited my nest, I hope you feel welcome.  I hope you share your thoughts and journeys with me and I hope you find your cozy and connectedness in this time too.

From my nest to yours,

Jill