Today, I feel much much better so I can tell you some of what was “wrong” with me without those crazy exhausted emotions getting in the way.

I WAS/AM HOMESICK….for my home-state, my home-town, my family. . . . . I wish I was in NY again!

When I had Jacob and Ethan, Rich and I lived in our first house in NY, near our families.  What I miss the most about that time was seeing my family any ol’ time I wanted to, and also having them come and visit me.  There is no one like your family if you come from a loving Christian home. 

Instead, I am here in CT.  Thankfully, my sister is nearby, which helps so much, but we are both currently in stages of life where it is almost impossible to hang around, visiting.  We are here in CT because of my husband’s job.  He has an awesome job that enables me to be a stay-at-home mama, and enables us to homeschool our children and buy the things we need to take care of our family.  We have an awesome house and the great outdoors is perfect for exploring and enjoying God’s creation.  But, at the same time……my husband has to work long hours, and is never free from his laptop, and blackberry.  And, I think, how much easier it would be if only I had my family to fall back on during the times that he is so busy.  I feel alone at this time with a newborn,  because I feel like there is no where for me to go (make that no where I want to go!  I did try the library the other day, and that didn’t help much), and no mom or aunts to come visit me ……like the “olden days”.


So that was that.  I realized, also, that there really is no point in thinking about the past, with longing.  I lived it already, enjoyed it, and now God wants me here.  I suppose that I have learned to lean on HIM in ways I never could have if we had stayed in NY.  “Back Home” would never be free from it’s own problems and struggles, as well.  “Back Home” wouldn’t mean perfect contentment, because that will never come until Jesus returns and makes all things new again.  I’m just saying, these are the honest thoughts that are in my heart.  I do, sometimes, wish we were still in NY.  I’m sure everyone who has ever “transplanted” feels that same way.  Yes?  “Bloom where you’re planted” is the advice given to anyone moving. . . .and it’s true, we do need to grow and flourish in our new environments, and in any change, but that doesn’t mean we don’t think about what we’ve left behind now and then.

So now that it’s Friday, I’m feeling better, perking up and looking forward to the weekend.  This week was hard because Rich was gone for 2 days and 2 nights and that is basically what set me off in my thinking about NY.  The kids don’t want to move, which makes me laugh.  They want to stay here where “all their friends are”. 

Going on a walk always cheers me up so let’s go!

Just outside my side door entry, I was astounded (last week) when I noticed some bulbs coming up!  Here in New England, every little bit of green is enough to make us smile. . . . .



I also noticed the Lady’s Mantle coming up.

One of the things that I find so comforting about my relationship with the Lord, is knowing that He will bring each season back, in it’s turn.  Spring will always come, sure as can be.  We can trust Him and His perfect timing.


The stream is a happy place to be, with it’s cool air, and sound of rushing water.


I like the darkness of the woods, with just enough beams of sunlight to make it all the more desired.


You just want to find those patches of sun, and stand in them.  You want to search out the brightest part of the water, and admire the reflection of the yellow sun. . . . .




I had to figure out how to cross the stream, because it was closer to the house that way and I was getting nervous about leaving the baby for too long (he was sleeping). . . .I gave myself a pep talk (“The kids do it all the time and they don’t care if they fall in and get THEIR feet wet!!”)  and made it across safe and sound.  My short walk rejuvenated me and reminded me that spring is coming.

This morning, I took the time to take a couple pictures of my little baby. . . . .

With around the clock feedings, I’m certain that He’s growing nicely.





These pictures are from the other day:


Finding some sun. . . .soaking in the rays.  (Amber, Seth is wearing the socks you sent him in this picture. )


David and Seth, last Saturday….I love the green striped pants on Seth.


Caleb and Grace snuggled up in Caleb’s room.  Notice all the Thomas stuff?  They were quietly playing a Thomas VTech game. . . .



Vanishing Mac ‘n cheese

3 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour
1/2 t. salt
2 cups milk
1/4 pound Velveeta, cut up
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 1/2-3 cups macaroni, cooked, drained

Melt butter in large saucepan on low heat.  Blend in flour and salt, cook and stir 1 minute.  Gradually add milk; cook, stirring constantly, until thickened.  Add cheeses, stir until melted.  Stir in macaroni.
Pour into greased casserole.  Bake at 350 for 20 minutes, or until thoroughly heated.  Serves about 6, depending.

I added 3 sliced hot dogs to the recipe the other day and served this for lunch.  Ethan was sick and didn’t eat but Jacob has been eating SO much lately that he had no trouble eating Ethan’s share.  He also objected when I helped myself to a Small Portion.  We had words over that. 


Okay, that does it for this blog.  Thanks for hanging in there, it took me forever to write all this because I had to keep taking breaks to do other things.

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend.  I’m SO glad it’s FRIDAY!

Love, Shanda

“The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime,
and in the night His song shall be with me.”
  Psalm 42:8

0 thoughts on “

  1. I just love seeing the new growth in the spring….I get that from my father who taught me so much about plants.I am glad you can get out in the fresh air…that you are not laid up in bed…that you are not in Africa somewhere…that your children are healthy…that you have a telephone whenever you want to call your folks…etc. Happy weekend!

  2. I love that little outfit that says “cutie” ~ cuz he sure is one!    Glad you could get out for a walk and that green things are beginning to grow ~ what fun it will be to take Seth on a walk in his stroller one of these days!

  3. I almost called you yesterday!  But then I didn’t want to disturb your possible nap time….I should have. Somehow I knew you needed a old friend – sorry I ignored the prompting.  Now I’m on my way out the door – but I will call this evening!  I love you and miss the old times too.  Talk to you later!

  4. I am in desperate need of a walk!!! The wind is blowing and the sun is not shining, but it is 50+ degrees!! Tomorrow will be freezing again… I am soo ready for spring again!!Even though I have been here in PA since I got married 10 years ago, each time I have a kid I miss “home” (WNY for me) more and more!!

  5. the pictures are beautiful. He is such a cutie. I love the green pants as well. That is my favorite color. I am sorry you are home sick. My hubby gets that way often. His family is over 900 miles away from us. He hasn’t seen them in a year and a half.

  6. i am glad you’re feeling better! i too feel that way often- we moved here a yr ago- and of course i have a new baby too so….i copied your recipe ! thanks :)i love the pics as usual!!

  7. I think I forgot to mention to you (I know I told Michelle) that I saw Fiestaware Dog Bowls in the Orvis Dog Catalog!  It made me think of you two and your love of Fiestaware.
    Your post is so precious and candid.  I know I felt this exact same way when my youngest was born… a little lonely and trapped.  But it was all for good and God’s bonding us to one another in a special way.  Treasure this time, it goes quickly!

  8. Glad you identified the source of your discontentment and feel free to write about it today. I told Jesse this past week – I FINALLY feel like I’m home. Something in me has changed and going “back home” to California no longer feels like home. I miss my family there (don’t get me wrong), but where I’m at has a greater pull on me.I have that phrase, “Bloom where you are planted,” on a chest in my foyer!

  9. Forgot to tell you . . . Today is Rissy’s birthday and you’ll never believe what the one and only thing (after a scooter) was that she asked for . . . Her own CD of “Quiet Beauty”!!! I ordered it, but it hasn’t arrived. I’m sure she’ll be happy with a late CD!!! Funny, huh?!

  10. Hang in there!  I totally understand about wanting to move closer to family — my husband is in the military and we are stationed in Calif.  while my family is back in New England and the Southeast.  I, too, am often reminded of “bloom where you are planted”, but it’s hard.  We have found a great church and friends — that is so helpful and just what I need.    There is where God has us now and I am sure He has us here so I can grow in ways that I couldn’t if I was around my family.  sorry this was long – you’re in my prayers.  Have a great weekend.

  11. Thanks for sharing your heart. I am very sure you are just as missed by family! Even here were we have so much green, I look for those shoots from the bulbs. I love the freshness of daffodils, tulips, and other bulbs. Your cutie is growing! Love the picture of Davy and Seth, it is priceless.

  12. My computer situation has changed and it has been very difficult getting the chance to blog lately, but I’m so glad I could read this today and comment.There is something very comforting, somehow, about another person being able to relate to you; well, that’s how I felt – that you were actually relating to ME – when I read those first few paragraphs. It felt like you articulated “to the T” how I have felt ever since we moved 1000 miles from my family, and nearly the whole time I’ve been physically incapacitated, had a newborn baby, or a sick husband. Also, though T doesn’t have the job pressure your husband does, his health is fragile (and he does work 9-10 hours most days to build up time off for the frequent days he goes in for treatments…); I often feel overwhelmed with the feeling of being the backbone of the family and no one to “fall back on.” For me, it can be scary, and I think I understand that loneliness you describe. For me, the strengthening of character has been a gradual process, not just something I could trust God and be done. There are many times I feel it is impossible to go on like this, and those are the very times the Lord proves Himself faithful in ways I otherwise wouldn’t have ever known.You are a strong woman, Shanda, and an example and encouragement to me and many others. May you feel His presence and quiet strength for your roles as wife, mother, and homemaker, even in these days of sleep deprivation. ❤ ❤ ❤

  13. Shanda I have a very busy husband! We hardly EVER get a day to just be…..maybe it’ll change one day….I hope! I remember that being very hard emotionally when the baby was new.
    I love the striped pants:):) and yes Seth is growing so nicely. I love the photo with him on the blanket in the sunlight!
    Have a wonderful day Shanda……..

  14. When we moved away from home I missed my family like crazy, too. But, it was only then that I discovered what a blessing my church family could be! Loved the pictures! He sure IS growing!

  15. Your so blessed to live in such a beautiful place. I know how hard it is to leave family and start off on your own. I left my family and moved to Colorado with 3 small children- one of them not even 1 yet. It was SO hard. My parents put in a 1-800# so that I could call them (LOL) (seriously!!)
    I can tell you this- I learned a lot about myself and my husband during that time. It strengthened our marriage in some very positive ways- because all we had was eachother…we didn’t know anyone in the area- and were thousands of miles from home….big lessons were learned during that time.
    I always enjoy your posts.

  16. Shanda, thank you for sharing your heart.  I felt that way after Rachel was born.  We had just moved (back) to AK after having been “home” for a while.  It is nice to have my sister close now (5ish hours away- close for AK lol!!).  So, was Jacob upset that you didn’t eat more, or that you had any at all??  Seth is such a cutie!!  I love his green striped pants- very bright and cheery!  I very much enjoyed seeing your bits of green poking up out of the ground.  The next few months I will be enjoying spring vicariously through your pictures.  Love ya!

  17. Hey! I read your blog all the time, but hardly ever comment. Your posts are always so encouraging to me!
    “One of the things that I find so comforting about my relationship with the Lord, is knowing that He will bring each season back, in it’s turn.  Spring will always come, sure as can be.  We can trust Him and His perfect timing.”
    Wow! Just what I needed to be reminded of! I love how you put that! Thanks for sharing your struggles and triumphs in this daily journey to our final HOME!

  18. Ive often felt as you do.  Not so much homesick, but lonely.  My husband also works late and goes to school full time, so Im home alot alone with the kiddos.  Most of my friends dont have as many kiddos as I do and theirs are older, so dropping in for a visit doesnt work well.  I find, as you did, getting out and breathing in the fresh air helps more than anything.  I think its quiet all right to blog about how you are feeling.  What we feel is never wrong. God gave us this capibibility and understands when we are sad, mad, happy, or just plain blah. (Plus you just had a baby !) I remember how it was having a baby and young ones to take care of mostly by myself. Very overwelming most days.   A wise friend of mine pointed out how David would feel and how he wrote about what his struggles were in the Psalms.  Getting these emotions into psalms (in my opinion) was as therapy for him.  Alot of times after we vent our feelings we feel better and can look at it in a better prespective and see the good things inspite of what we desperately want different(as you did in this post).  David never failed to end his psalms with praises and thankfulness for Gods work in his life, even when he was fleeing for his life ! 
    I wish you lots and lots of encouragement during this overwhelming moment in your life !     (((((( Hugs )))))) 

  19. Aww, I think we all feel like that some days no matter the place God has us in. Thanks for sharing with us. This was a beautiful post. Hope your weekend is lovely. Oh my, Seth IS growing! He looks terrific!!

  20. It is so good for me to hear, I LOVE my family but am so itchy to travel and move and have new experineces but if I got my way I am sure I would be right where you are!  I am so thankful that your sister is there, and you will not feel so housebound once Seth (do the kids call him Sethy yet?) is older.
    The bulbs made my heart happy, we all need Spring!  I like the first shot taken from up high where Seth is laying ont he blanket, I really want to reach in and pick him up.  The green pants shot made me laugh, he looks like he is fifty years old, his expression is so mature, it is riculously cute!
    I will pray for you my friend that your days will be full of patches of sunlight and His joy!

  21. I’m just a phone call away, I know I keep saying that (probably about four times now) but I mean it.  I’m glad you had a nice walk, hope you have a lovely weekend.  Love, Trish

  22. I can relate to in a lot of ways. I was home sick while I lived there. We did transplant down here near family. I live 30 min from my mom and 45 min from my dads and 1 min from my MIL. It has its perks to be here but I do miss it there. When my mom came up there to visit we would do a getaways to Yankee candle and have girls day! We just had such good quality visits when she was up there every three months. Now it is different. I guess I take advantage of time we spend together. My husband and I went through many trials while we lived there. We were closer to God and each other. We leaned on Him and each other. Now we have struggles and He feels so far away. I made friends with a great group of ladies at Calvary. I don’t have that here and oh I long for it. I ache with lonliness……sorry to go on and on. Thank you for speaking about this topic. I will pray for your homesickness. Hugs!Courtney

  23. So glad to hear today was better~ yes, getting OUT always helps. and knowing the day is FRIDAY!!! 🙂 I love the picture of Grace and Caleb reading… my little brother Nate would bring in a stack of books every night for me to read to him! sweet memories~ and I can already see changes in Seth!! you probably don’t notice as much since you see him every day, but you can certainly tell he’s growing. glad he likes the socks 😉 though I hate having those adorable little toes covered!!Wishing you a haPpy hapPy weekend my friend~ ❤

  24. Sorry you aren’t too close to family. I did that for 9 months when we first got married, didn’t go so well. Really shame on me, I guess I was a big baby. I’m so grateful to be close to my Mom now, my sisters and Mom take a load off my shoulder when I need them too. I do know that moving would be a big deal, but I think I’ve grown up enough that I could handle it. I’d have the same spell that you had yesterday though. Hope you feel Jesus real close giving you grace for the stage your in. Your baby boy is a little doll, don’t they grow like little weeds?

  25. Thanks for the reminder that God will bring each season in it’s time.  I told my husband the other day that I’m at the point in winter where I wonder if I’m really going to survive this cold and coats and boots and being indoors etc.   Spring…. how I long for you. 
     Blessings to you Shanda in dealing with the things you are right now.  We are surrounded by family, which i enjoy, but sometimes I wish to move away just because of what it would call us too… reaching out more and depending on God in a new way and partly just seeing if we really could do it.  I know what you are saying though and I love the way you are OK with where God has placed you for now.  God has a good plan for you.

  26. I’m glad you could write out your feelings~ when I was your age it helped me greatly and made it easier to release them to God.So does going for a walk with my camera, I can almost feel the Lord there with me.The pictures of Seth are so dear. I love how you refer to him as “my baby”Your recipe is looks like just the thing my daughter needs to feed her “boys”…8 guys from church who share a house, and Bri cooks dinner for them once or twice a month. They give her money for food and devour anything she makes!

  27. Oh Shanda, I can totally relate to some of what you’re going through!!! Wanting to be near family… My husband worked very long hours and I had no family around to help me. Yes, it was rough going at times, but God gave us exactly the strength and desire to stick to it that we needed. He also blessed us with a few friends from church who gave us a break once in a blue moon..I loved my kids (actually still do!), but boy, did I need a break. I was one of those nervous Nellies and ended up having a mini nervous breakdown every 3 or 4 years. Did you think I’d say months? Yea, that was when somebody would step in and say, “Hey, I’ll take your baby to my house for a couple hours so you can take a nap!” May the Lord shower blessings upon my friend Sheryl for that! Anyway, you’ll be okay. You have an army of praying people around you and a gorgeous area to take a nice walk through. That baby is absolutley munchable!  love, Gail You look GREAT, by the way!!!!!

  28. I’m glad you’re having a better day today..or, yesterday, I guess. I’ve been praying for you!I was going to make the mac and cheese…but you didn’t say how much milk to add! Is it just until it thickens?

  29. I am SO there some days as well, my family is all 1000 mi away, and only 10 min. apart.  Last week I was blue, but this past Thursday night I was blessed with a 2hr 3way call w/my mom and sister after the children were in bed – what a boost!  I like to go dig around in my flowerbeds when I miss  “home”, there I find lots of plants given from those I miss and new friends here – a reminder of what I have and the how truly blessed I am. – Jan

  30. i want to go outside right now and see if my bulbs are coming up!  My heart skipped a beat when i saw those pictures!  Shan, sometimes I wish we were closer too.  Sometimes I wish I could move away and be a little more independent, but I am so glad at the same time that I’m just minutes away from family.  You’re correct.  No matter where you are you do sometimes have longings to be different.  There is nothing like being where God wants you to be and I know for sure that God wants me where I’m at and is using me.  I love you!  Elisha

  31. random question. of all the people i seem to think you can help me.. at least make me feel at ease lol. i just found out i am pregnant with baby #2. It is truely a blessing but at the same time i am having a hard time with this. i am so emotional because in the back of my mind i am terrified my daughter will not adjust (she will be 3 when the baby is born). i am so scared of her feeling left out or replaced. i know my husband and i are not going to leave her out nor replace her by any means but i am scared she will think this. this makes me bawl my eyes out everytime i think about it. lol. did you ever have any of these feelings when you were pregnant with any of your children? thanks so much!
    God Bless!

  32. Oh I can so totally relate with your husband’s job…mine has a great job too, but it means that he’s gone pretty much all the time and when he is home he’s tied to that darn laptop and blackberry! When I had my last baby we had just moved to a new place a few months before, and we’ve always lived about an hour and a half from my family. It’s really hard, I know. Especially as new moms we need that help and support from family and friends. You might want to check into hiring a postpartum doula. She would come and help you out with whatever you need. You can check to see if there is one in your area. I think it would be really be a wise idea if you can afford to do it. I would love to come help if only I wasn’t so far away!

  33. Sending hugs your way, I know what you mean, we are 2 1/2 hours away from our family to.  We don’t have any family up here with us and I get very homesick to.   I love the picture of the mac n cheese, you can tell your family liked it!

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