Please note: All images on this blog (except where noted) are original works of Miki Baxter and cannot be duplicated without permission. Also, if you're inspired by a project featured on here, then please link back to me and give proper credit. Thank you!!!


Why I Blog

Even with my modest number of followers, I noticed today that one person stopped following me.  Though it didn't bother me, I wondered why.  Several blogs have recently posted about the challenges of gaining followers or popularity, especially for those wanting to make an income from blogging.  All of that got me thinking about why I blog.

Initially this blog was a way to update family and friends about our lives and to post pictures of the kids.  Eventually I started another blog, House of Beauty & Culture, for creative projects while keeping this one for my personal voice and to share about family life.  This blog has turned into an online journal of sorts...reflections of past experiences, living in the now, and ever hopeful for the future.  

It is a thrill to receive comments and e-mails about something I've written.  And I have been so blessed by the new friends I've made through blogging.  With the huge move across the country and family members undergoing huge challenges, I haven't written a lot recently.  I apologize for my absence.  I haven't been a good commenter either, sorry :-(

God has been ever so gracious to me in the midst of the whirlwind of experiences-emotions-changes-challenges.  I look forward to sharing some of the things He's shown me.  His Word IS true and steady, especially in the midst of unsteady times.  God is so very accessible;  He hears our prayers and responds.  It may not be in the way we anticipated, but He is there, "an ever-present help" in times of trouble and need (Psalm 46).


Can't Quite Put Into Words...

I haven't been able to fill the blank page with anything recently.  
No thoughts to write, though I've had plenty of them.  
No emotions to share, though I've had plenty of those too.

Packing, Moving, Unpacking, my mother's health challenges in the midst of all of that have left me.  Quiet.  Prayerful.  and Quiet.

I just found out that Mom is being admitted to the hospital again.  Right now.  Please pray for her and for my family.  Underlying all of this is a peace that comes only from God.  I know He has my Mom and He has me.  It's a lot to take in and process... 


"Get Dressed Challenge" Week In Review

This challenge, simply to get dressed, fixed up (hair and make-up), for the week shouldn't have difficult...but it was.  I'd like to say that it was an especially challenging week because my mom was in hospital, but the truth of the matter is:  it has become a habit for me to just throw myself together daily.  Sunday mornings have been the only day I've taken the time to sit at my make-up table, fix my hair and make-up, and put on a nice outfit.   

Monday:  Not a successful day.  My mom was undergoing serious tests and the emotional turmoil was overwhelming.
Tuesday:  Got dressed, put on make-up and fixed my hair...success! (Though not first thing in the morning.)  The kids and I went to a homeschool knitting class for the first time and met new friends.
Wednesday:  A productive day in the house, making it pretty...but not me.  Hmm...

Thursday:  Another outing and success, though it still wasn't first thing in the morning.  I have a bad habit of not getting ready until the allotted time needed before heading out the door.

Friday:  Though I have another outing planned, I still did not get ready first thing.  This is the big habit I need to change...if I developed a new habit of getting fully dressed and ready first thing, it wouldn't matter if we had an outing or not.  I'd be ready for the day. 

Though this challenge was harder than expected, I really appreciate the push towards making the effort to look nice daily.  It is a worthwhile goal, and I intend to continue to develop the habit/taking the time for myself.    


"Get Dressed!" Day Two: A Measure of Success

Ha ha, this was NOT me yesterday, though I did get dressed and put on make-up.  In the slump that is today, I didn't feel up to downloading photos from yesterday.  So I posted one already in a computer file as a fill-in and also as a reminder that it IS possible to be pulled together.  Just not today.  And I am OK with that.

Yesterday we attended a homeschool knitting class for my daughter;  I chatted with groovy moms while kids knitted or played.  The bonus was a boy my son's age.  Yippee for new friends!!!  Then we took a drive to pick-up a hot pink sphere chair for my daughter's oh-so-cool French room.  Yippee for Craigslist finds!!!  All in all, it was a good day.  I looked pulled together and chic.  It felt good.

This morning started out okay.  The snow overnight (wait, it is April, right?) determined that today will be an inside day.  My mom has now been in hospital for a week and is not handling things well.  The last few days I've had to deal with parents behaving badly, and it doesn't feel very nice.  I am giving them a time-out so that I can regroup, focus on what is before me and not get drawn into the drama.  Today, my therapy is in making the house look pretty.  I set up the dining room area and have been sorting my creative supplies.  I have apothecary jars to fill, candles to light, tweakings that need to take place all over the house...all while listening to 80s music.  Sounds like a good day to me!    


"Get Dressed" Giveaway

There's a fantastic giveaway going on as part of the "Get Dressed" Challenge over at Like A Warm Cup Of Coffee.  DownEast Basics has some seriously cute clothes and accessories for unbelievable prices!  Go check out the giveaway and their website!!!

Day One: Emotional Turmoil

Today was the first day of the Get Dressed Challenge, and I failed miserably.  I had even planned an outing with my kids, knowing that it'd provoke me to get dressed.  We ended up staying home.  Getting dressed for the day, looking's not rocket science but why is it even an issue???

Today was a difficult day for me because my mother is in the hospital almost 2000 miles away.  She's had numerous health challenges in recent months, and the doctor's report over the weekend wasn't great.  She had exploratory surgery today, and they didn't find what they suspected, which is great news.  However, there's still no clear explanation for the difficulties she's been having.  So the waiting continues...

Emotional turmoil.  Life is full of challenges and stresses to overcome - some days I triumph and sometimes I sink under the weight of it.  Today was a sinker.  I did accomplish some things but kept losing focus and energy.  I slowed my pace and lowered my expectations, being gentle with myself and with the family.  I may not have looked pretty (smile), but my family didn't suffer from additional ugliness brought on by yielding to stress/emotional upset, etc.  In that sense, I claim victory for today.

In the words of Scarlett O'Hara..."After all, tomorrow's another day..."


"Get Dressed" Challenge

I am participating in this "Get Dressed" Challenge over at Like A Warm Cup of Coffee.  

No more Frumpy.
No more showers at 3:00 in the afternoon.
No more "Oh well, might as well stay in my pajamas 'cause no one will see me anyway."

Yes to make-up!
Yes to fixing my hair just because.
Yes to taking great care of myself and making that a priority.

To join this radical movement, hop over to Like A Warm Cup of Coffee.  You are worth it!  You'll be glad you did (and so will your kids, your spouse and the poor FedEx delivery driver who catches, us in our sweats and crazy hair.)


Snapshots of Our New Home in Colorado: A Pictoral Essay

One of the most amazing things about living in Colorado are the views of the mountains.  This is what we are blessed to see as we drive around town...breathtaking!
This pagoda is located in my neighborhood at a Japanese park alongside a small stream.  With sports fields, a playground and pool, we will be spending a lot of time here!
This fiery plant was at the entrance of another park that we visited as we toured our new area.  Another fantastic aspect of Colorado are the number of parks, trails and biking paths everywhere.
An industrial component on the other side of this park and lake.  I like the contrast of the gritty steel...
...with the beauty of the lake and river.

Charming homes by the entrance of a park that is also close to our neighborhood.

Inside the park...
The end of our day exploring the town...