What I Hope You Know

I never thought in a million years that I would end up with this gig. I love being a mom & I love to create. And those two things brought me here, to this blog & to this community. And I will be forever grateful for all of you for giving me that opportunity, for reading here & hanging my art in your homes. A lot has been going on this year so far, in our community of family and friends, and also in the world, and it is sometimes so hard to put things into words. Blogging for me is all about creating a space that leaves people feeling happy & inspired after reading. But it’s also a space where I want people to connect, with my words and with each other, so I feel like before I can continue with all of the things I want to share and post about this year, there are a few things that I want to make sure you know.

I hope you know that behind every pretty picture is still a mess in the kitchen, piles of laundry to be folded & half a dozen unfinished projects that have been pushed to the side.

I hope you know that for every sweet & silly thing my kids do, they still fight, throw fits & drive me to my absolute breaking point.

I hope you know that behind every selfie, there is a frazzled, overtired mom with unwashed hair who has probably cursed too many times that day about another mess or lost shoe.

I hope you know that for every finished project, it doesn’t happen without stress, exhaustion & a few disagreements about how/what/why we are doing it. Selling our house & renovating a kitchen at the same time was one of the hardest things our marriage has ever gone through.

I hope you know that just because I parent one way, doesn’t mean that I think it’s the only way. I never, ever want anyone to feel less than after reading here. Whether you breastfeed or formula feed, stay at home or work in an office, feed your kids all organic or macaroni and hot dogs twice a week, no matter who you voted for or who you pray to, you are welcome here.

There are a lot of things that I just choose not to talk about here, but that doesn’t mean we don’t experience them. Pain, loss, worry, anxiety, defeat and guilt are things that are going on in our lives, and in the lives of people we love. For every moment captured or story written, there are thousands more untold.

And at the end of even the worst days, I will always choose to see the beauty, because it is always there. And I hope that you will do that too.

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173 Comments

  • Reply
    Tiffany
    January 25, 2017 at 9:39 am

    This is beautifully written. I have been reading your blog since the very beginning and I feel like this is just a perfect post to add in. Thank you!

  • Reply
    Alexa
    January 25, 2017 at 9:44 am

    Loved this! I love following along exactly for those reasons, to leave feeling happy and inspired. So thank you 🙂

  • Reply
    Pamela
    January 25, 2017 at 9:47 am

    Great post. Thanks for sharing! It’s always a nice reminder. Also, kerp sharing the good and the beauty of each day because at the end of it all remembering the happy moments is all the matters 🙂

  • Reply
    Kelly Flowe
    January 25, 2017 at 9:47 am

    We all wake up each morning and put our pants on one leg at a time 😊.

    Thank you for being so relatable and sharing your beautiful family with us.

  • Reply
    Kristen O'Brien
    January 25, 2017 at 9:53 am

    I absolutely LOVE this post! It’s always nice when bloggers remind their readers that they are every day people with every day problems and issues because with beautiful pictures and posts it’s easy to forget that life is gritty and raw sometimes. Cheers to you for writing this and being vulnerable to post about the messiness of life. <3<3

    Kristen

  • Reply
    Heather
    January 25, 2017 at 9:57 am

    Thank you for this post!! It brought me to tears. You write beautiful posts and have a wonderful family. You make me strive to be a better mother, to make memories and to not sweat the small stuff. It is nice to know there is another Mom who has happy kids but doesn’t always have it together! I always look forward to readying!! Thank you again!!

  • Reply
    Amy Fauska
    January 25, 2017 at 9:58 am

    This is beautiful, thank you! I have been folowing since your chalkboard with Harper and enjoy every post.

  • Reply
    Kelly
    January 25, 2017 at 9:59 am

    Love!

  • Reply
    Krissy
    January 25, 2017 at 10:03 am

    You! Are absolutely adorable!

  • Reply
    Rachael
    January 25, 2017 at 10:09 am

    Beautiful post, thank you for sharing your life and being real with us. There will always be people who are jealous of you and want to bring you down – you don’t owe them anything.

  • Reply
    Krissy
    January 25, 2017 at 10:11 am

    Thank you for these eloquent words. They are thoughtful and appreciated. ❤️

  • Reply
    Ashley
    January 25, 2017 at 10:12 am

    Best post to date. I love your blog, and have for years! I have three little girls (6, 5 and 2) and I love the sisterhood. I am also one of three girls. I think its a pretty great club to be a part of. 🙂

  • Reply
    Kelly
    January 25, 2017 at 10:15 am

    We all have beautiful and utter CHAOS:) Always appreciate your posts and frequent cursing. We are “Classy but we cuss a little”..or a lot depending on the day 😉

  • Reply
    Marykate
    January 25, 2017 at 10:27 am

    I love this! You know what I’ve been wondering? How has your cat handled the recent changes? Moving, construction, and even adding kids to the mix? We moved our 2 cats just months before our first baby arrived and it really stressed them out!

  • Reply
    Gina
    January 25, 2017 at 10:33 am

    So thankful for this post! I often compare myself to other moms and how their houses look, how cute their kids clothes are, and how perfect their pictures look. It is so easy to forget that at the end of the day we are all moms trying to make it from one day to the next. Today was a hard day but keeping in mind what you said I can see there was also a lot of beauty. Thankful for this blog.

  • Reply
    Stephanie Dunn
    January 25, 2017 at 10:34 am

    Best. Post. Ever.

  • Reply
    Bridget N
    January 25, 2017 at 10:43 am

    Thank you for being so real. Your words are truly inspirational.

  • Reply
    Ria
    January 25, 2017 at 10:46 am

    I’ve followed your blog from the beginning and it’s the only one I read now. I love your posts but sometimes it’s hard seeing nothing but Pinterest perfection all the time. I wish you would share the messes, the frustrations, the stuff that is unfinished-because as moms, we totally understand how messy and chaotic life can be. Much love!

  • Reply
    Amanda
    January 25, 2017 at 10:47 am

    Love this SO much!!!!

  • Reply
    Chelsey Sanders
    January 25, 2017 at 10:50 am

    Love love love this!!! You’re always uplifting and inspiring.

  • Reply
    Kristin Barnett
    January 25, 2017 at 10:57 am

    Love this! Appreciate and love your honesty! As a momma to a 18 month old and a 10 week old I can totally relate to all of it! Mommin ain’t easy that’s for sure!

  • Reply
    Carli
    January 25, 2017 at 11:06 am

    Love this! It’s true of all of us bit is so nice to hear! Thanks for the honesty! Hugs ♡

  • Reply
    Samantha
    January 25, 2017 at 11:18 am

    Love this post. Love reading your blog. I found you through Pinterest baby belly chalkboards. We had our daughter Eloise and then realized you had not only one daughter but two at the time. ( which is when I finally found you had a blog) Which was extra special because you too had an Eloise. I continue to read your blog posts. I feel like you’re very genuine and real. It’s almost like you’re here in the same room talking when you read your posts. You’re awesome! Keep up the good work Momma! I am dying to see your home tour!!

  • Reply
    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    January 25, 2017 at 11:25 am

    I love reading your blog. Don’t worry, I think your readers know all of this!

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

  • Reply
    Megan
    January 25, 2017 at 11:31 am

    Jessica, thank you for being you. I’ve been reading your blog since the beginning and have always loved and appreciated your posts as well as respect the content that you thoughtfully post while keeping your life, YOUR LIFE. Thank you for continuing to share what you do!

  • Reply
    Amanda Nelson
    January 25, 2017 at 11:40 am

    Amen! That was so beautifully written!! We seem to look up to.m bloggers as these perfect humans and it is so humbling to read this and be reminded that you are just like us! Thank you for giving us a snapshot into your world daily and being vulnerable to the scary world of the internet. You are amazing! Every time I read your posts. I always say to myself that I wish I were your friend! 🙂

  • Reply
    Kay
    January 25, 2017 at 11:42 am

    I stumbled upon your blog through pinterest when Harper was a newborn. I didn’t even know blogs were a thing then. I finally was able to get pregnant and become a mama in 2013. Without a family of other women, and very few friend’s with children, I kept coming back to your blog. Read your monthly favorites and things for advice. The holiday fun, the creativity, and the funny stories make reading your blog so much fun! However, I’ve now checked out several other blogs over the years, but yours is real, happy, truthful, and inspiring. Thank you for providing such a wonderful little spot on the Internet, especially when there seems to be so much of the opposite going on in the world right now.

  • Reply
    Marifer Quevedo
    January 25, 2017 at 11:42 am

    Your best post yet. Loved every word! ❤️️

  • Reply
    Jenna C
    January 25, 2017 at 11:46 am

    This was beautiful! Thank you for being real and making everyone feel equal! You are amazing and this is my absolute favorite blog to keep coming back to read.

  • Reply
    Angelica Cornelio
    January 25, 2017 at 11:54 am

    I love this post. I can relate in soooo many ways!!! Nice to see that there are genuine people like you that don’t pretend to have the perfect life on social media, but always look at the bright side and share bits and pieces if your life with us!!!! Such a refreshing post!!!!

  • Reply
    Liz Kozachuk
    January 25, 2017 at 11:57 am

    Thank you Jessica for being real, honest and humble! I can’t speak for every reader but I’ve know this about you. I mean that as the highest compliment. Your blog is one of my favorites because I always leave your page feeling inspired. You being you means a lot!

  • Reply
    Mary Beth
    January 25, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    💜💜 love this so much! I’ve been a long time reader…like since your first post lol. It’s so easy to get caught up in the comparison game even though there is no such thing as perfect. My kids make me literally rather pull my hair out than hear fighting/crying/tantrums on the daily! But like you said, even challenging times, there’s still beauty in the chaos.

  • Reply
    Kathryn
    January 25, 2017 at 12:50 pm

    Girl, I have loved reading your blog from the very beginning- when you lived in a townhouse and were pregnant with your first baby. I was pregnant with my first baby too. I have loved following along and seeing how “littlebabygarvin” makes it through day to day life.

    Thank you for inspiring me to be better and reminding me I’m normal! Xoxo

    • Reply
      Kathryn
      January 25, 2017 at 12:53 pm

      Haha also- I promise I’m not some weird creeper. That comment sounded a little strange. Ha just a long time follower who has loved following you!

  • Reply
    andrea
    January 25, 2017 at 1:13 pm

    Thank you for this post. It was much needed. I choose to see beauty as well.

  • Reply
    Daryl Ann Mead
    January 25, 2017 at 1:36 pm

    Love this!! I have laughed and cried while reading your posts and I look forward to what you’re going to share next! My favorite post is still Harper going to the bathroom on the hotel floor and I just love you for being so honest about what motherhood is really like. Thank you ❤️

  • Reply
    Lisa
    January 25, 2017 at 1:48 pm

    Perfectly said! -XO!

  • Reply
    veeke
    January 25, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    thank you for your kind words – just what I needed right now! I sometimes forget those things and get frustrated …

  • Reply
    Sarah
    January 25, 2017 at 6:04 pm

    This is so beautifully written 🙂 Thanks for sharing!! I love coming to your space for happiness and to see what’s going on with your little ones, as my three girls are practically the same ages as yours! As a blogger myself (and for anyone who uses social media, ha), we share what we want to share. I hope people are able to see that and don’t think that others’ lives are far superior to their own. We all have a place and a purpose, and none of us have it all figured out – regardless of what appears on the internet screen!!

    Thanks for keepin’ it real, girlie!! Have a nice week!!

    -Sarah http://www.thefrugalmillionaireblog.com

  • Reply
    Andrea
    January 25, 2017 at 6:24 pm

    Thank you for this :). I’ve followed you for years and always leave with a smile. There’s always more to a picture, and I appreciate you recognizing that. Love to you and your family.

  • Reply
    Laura
    January 25, 2017 at 6:47 pm

    Thank you for sharing this. <3

  • Reply
    Melissa
    January 25, 2017 at 6:57 pm

    I thank you for this today. The struggle is real these days. The truth behind the beauty is the reality of our lives. I’ve followed your blog since your pregnancy chalkboards with Harper, I was pregnant shortly thereafter. It’s been wonderful to see your beautiful family grow. Keep up the light and joy, and thanks for keeping it real.

  • Reply
    Amy
    January 25, 2017 at 7:07 pm

    Oh how you hit the nail on the head with this post. I’m actually in tears. Everything you wrote spoke straight to my heart.

  • Reply
    maggie bestgen
    January 25, 2017 at 7:10 pm

    This is always nice to hear. ❤️

  • Reply
    Seana Turner
    January 25, 2017 at 7:32 pm

    So wonderful that you “keep it real” in this post. So many Moms are home thinking they are doing something wrong because their homes don’t look like a magazine, and their lives aren’t as fun as the lives of others they see on FB. Everyone has highs and lows, and odds are you are doing as well as anybody else out there. Celebrate the happy moments, and have grace with yourself when things fall apart!

  • Reply
    Emily
    January 25, 2017 at 8:02 pm

    Love this A MILLION times over!!!

  • Reply
    Claudia
    January 25, 2017 at 8:08 pm

    Thank you for this. I love your blog and I love following along on social media. I never get tired or bored of reading your blog or seeing your posts. I love seeing how other people live and how other people parent and I am ALWAYS inspired when I read your blog or see your posts. Thank you for keeping it real.

  • Reply
    Catherine
    January 25, 2017 at 8:08 pm

    Ive never commented before but this was beautifully refreshing. Thank you

  • Reply
    Gina
    January 25, 2017 at 8:08 pm

    Im so glad you wrote this post! I read a lot of of blogs and was starting to feel guilty for being a full time working mama. I, too, am creative and artistic, but being the primary bread winner, I could never leave my job and take the chance on trying to make a career out of what I love. You are so humble and its good to know that even though you look like you have the perfect family/relationship, you still have your struggles, like anyone else. I would love to see more ‘real’ posts. Keep up the good work!

  • Reply
    Lynne Lemon
    January 25, 2017 at 8:16 pm

    Well put!

  • Reply
    Elyse Johnson
    January 25, 2017 at 8:36 pm

    Thank you thank you thank you a million times for this post! Those feelings are so real and I too try to always find the beauty among the mess. Love your blog!

  • Reply
    Ana Ligia Rezende
    January 25, 2017 at 8:37 pm

    Thank you Jess for this reminder. A LOT of the time we only focus on how perfect someone else’s life is and try to mirror that, when all it brings is disappointment in ourselves. God bless!

  • Reply
    April V
    January 25, 2017 at 8:42 pm

    this was beautiful.. your blog is my favorite <3

  • Reply
    Leanne Hanley
    January 25, 2017 at 8:58 pm

    Oh my, I love this post!! Have a great Wednesday!!

  • Reply
    Sydney
    January 25, 2017 at 8:58 pm

    THIS is why I love you! *praise hands emoji* Thank you for always keeping it real. It’s reassuring to know that my life isn’t the only one that isn’t always *bloggy.* Your positivity is inspiring and downright contagious, so keep doing what you’re doing! 🙂

  • Reply
    Celeste
    January 25, 2017 at 9:04 pm

    I know people say it all the time here, but I just love your honesty. Maybe the pretty pictures bring readers in, but its you that makes us stay. Thanks for sharing this.

  • Reply
    Camille
    January 25, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    You are incredible! Thank you for sharing the truths but I do love the way that you write your blog. It challenges me to see the beauty in the mess and to pay attention to the little things that make me happy rather than worrying about all of my problems that HAVE to be solved in order to make me happy. I love you and your blog!

  • Reply
    Nicole Greco
    January 25, 2017 at 9:09 pm

    Love you so much, Mama G. This post is perfection…and we know all our lives are not. They’re not meant to be. They’re meant to be beautiful disasters. That’s where memories are made. Keep on keepin’ it real!

  • Reply
    Nicole
    January 25, 2017 at 9:18 pm

    Jessica I truly adore reading your blog. I love hearing about your family traditions. I love reading about your decor and clothing style. I love reading how you parent the good and bad. I connect with you in such a way it has me laughing out loud most days and other times reaching for a Kleenex because you have just shared the raw truth about watching our babies grow up. Thank you for putting yourself out there and sharing all your stories. Whether it be on the blog, Instagram or Snapchat it always brightens my day to see a new post from you. You are doing an awesome job mama keep it up ❤

  • Reply
    B
    January 25, 2017 at 9:21 pm

    I love your blog bc I am always happy when I leave. I am inspired to try something new for our home or our children and it is fun! I am never under the assumption that everything is always picture perfect. I have three kids similarly aged. I know what life is like. I too also choose to only see the beauty.

  • Reply
    Kiki - According to Kiki
    January 25, 2017 at 9:39 pm

    Thank you for this! It’s so tough to get caught up in the perfection of social media and wish that was our own life. It’s true no matter how pretty the pictures are, most of us mamas have snot on our sleeves, and ground fishy crackers in the couch cushions. (;

  • Reply
    Ashley
    January 25, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    🙌🏻🙌🏻 girl!! So good, love your transparency. I admire your creativity and design. It’s evident your an amazing mom!! I find your blog a hideaway of inspiration for me as a young mom and have actually inspired me to seek out my own talents and love of design for my home and family! Keep doing what your doing, your blog is a gift!!!! Much love ❤️

  • Reply
    Laina
    January 25, 2017 at 9:55 pm

    And this is why I follow you! 🙂 I find your posts to be something to aspire to, not something unattainable. Your blog makes me smile every time I read it. Thank you for keeping this a beautiful, positive place!

  • Reply
    Michelle N
    January 25, 2017 at 9:58 pm

    Amen sister. Thanks for being honest and still sharing (and reminding us of) the beauty in everyday life.

  • Reply
    Emily Powell
    January 25, 2017 at 10:02 pm

    Such a sweet post. As much as I like to keep it real I also like to post my pretty pictures! Not that it means that is my life 24/7 but I’m thankful for the peaceful picture perfect moments just like I’m thankful for the mundane every day. Both make up life 🙂

  • Reply
    Nicole
    January 25, 2017 at 10:06 pm

    LOVE this! My new slogan is #smokeandmirrors! I agree, there is so much beauty in our lives, but it’s sometimes hard to see with everything we all have going on. If we can end each day thinking about what went well that day or what made us smile that day, even if we have massive sh*t storms brewing, it gives us a ray of hope.

  • Reply
    Holly Buckingha
    January 25, 2017 at 10:08 pm

    <3 this. You are the best!

  • Reply
    Mackensey
    January 25, 2017 at 10:13 pm

    While I love seeing all of the happy that you share, it is always refreshing to read a post like that. One of the best things about this community is being able to relate to other mother’s, and knowing that we are all struggling and experiencing the little joys together. Thank you so much for your honesty and perspective!

  • Reply
    elicia
    January 25, 2017 at 10:18 pm

    thank you…this post made me feel better about my unorganized toy room, bad cursing habit, and most of the time being at least 5 steps behind! 🙂

  • Reply
    Alexis
    January 25, 2017 at 10:22 pm

    It’s always great to hear that life is life and it’s not always pretty. Solidarity sister!

  • Reply
    Andrea
    January 25, 2017 at 10:27 pm

    Love this and love your blog. I have been following for a long time. You have a gift for words and for creating a beautiful space, but also keeping it real. Keep up the good work!

  • Reply
    Jennifer
    January 25, 2017 at 10:29 pm

    Oh my gosh this made me tear up. What an awesome attitude and outlook you have! As a mom, it is hard not to compare ourselves to one another and the reality is, it’s just ridiculous to do so. I think us mothers all know deep down how hard this awesome job can be and wants to support one another. Thank you for writing this. I hope all mothers will embrace your attitude. Love, love, love

  • Reply
    Kristina Carter
    January 25, 2017 at 10:30 pm

    This is the most beautiful blog post I’ve ever read! Thank you for sharing friend 💛

  • Reply
    Heather Davis
    January 25, 2017 at 10:31 pm

    Beautifully written! Cheers to that!!

  • Reply
    JoMarie
    January 25, 2017 at 10:34 pm

    Thank you. Thank you for being so honest. I’ve followed your blog from the beginning and sometimes, on my worst days when I’ve screamed and thrown something and done something I wish I could take back all due to pure sleep deprivation and zero patience, I wonder if you’ve ever experienced days like that or if I’m all alone and the only mom to do or say those things 🙁 So, even though I don’t know you at all, this post made me feel like we’re in the same boat, just paddling every day to stay afloat. Wishing you lots of joy, happiness, and blessings from the Midwest and know that on some of my worst days, I turn to your blog to lift me up. Thank you. ❤

  • Reply
    JoMarie
    January 25, 2017 at 10:35 pm

    and PS. This made me cry! lol 🙂

  • Reply
    Becca Weber
    January 25, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    Jessica, this is exactly why I love reading your blog! Always honest and real!! Thank you for creating this space that is true, inspiring, funny and most of all real. I feel like we need more people like you in this crazy time in our world. I pray you continue to share the love and keep your glass always half full! Thank you so much for sharing your creative gift with all of us readers! 💕

  • Reply
    Shauna
    January 25, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    I think this was so important to say. Too many of us depend and believe all the good stuff we see on other people’s social media (people rarely post a bad picture/moment)
    We live in a world of “keeping up with the Joneses” Your blog is one of the only few I
    follow. It’s nice to hear that for every nice Moment there is also chaos like all of us Mom’s/wives out here. You’ve always been pretty honest about that! Thank-You for sharing some of your world and heart with us! God Bless💕

  • Reply
    Jacqueline Parker
    January 25, 2017 at 10:37 pm

    Such a beautiful post. Thank you for sharing.

  • Reply
    Mathilde
    January 25, 2017 at 10:37 pm

    Oh my God love your post so much ! i’m a french mum of a little boy (2 years 1/2) and it can be so hard sometimes with my job (at home), my home, my husband etc… Thank you for telling us the reality behind the scene ! T.H.A.N.K Y.O.U Sooo muuch ! your girls are so cute but i know they can be some kind of… little crazy monsters now ! 😉 😉

  • Reply
    Mel
    January 25, 2017 at 10:40 pm

    THIS. This was such an encouragement. Thank you so much for sharing your heart. What a gift to read this today.

  • Reply
    Melissa
    January 25, 2017 at 10:40 pm

    I’ve been a reader since before Harper and my daughter were born and I’ve always loved following you because they are such similar ages and it’s so fun to see the similarities and differences. I so appreciate your positivity and your pictures and words always remind me to see the positive in motherhood and life and to try to enjoy it all!
    So thank you for the happy space you’ve created-I truly appreciate it!! ❤

  • Reply
    Jen @ our delicious life
    January 25, 2017 at 10:42 pm

    Beautiful.

  • Reply
    Jen @ our delicious life
    January 25, 2017 at 10:43 pm

    Beautiful

  • Reply
    Andrea
    January 25, 2017 at 10:46 pm

    You are such a light. I absolutely love reading your words. Thank you for the inspiration in more ways than one!

  • Reply
    Stephanie Allen
    January 25, 2017 at 10:47 pm

    Great post!!!! Love your honesty, positive outlook on life and opening up your home and adorable kids with the rest of us! Ps what’s the theme for Harpers bday this year?!?

  • Reply
    Heather
    January 25, 2017 at 10:48 pm

    Amen, amen, amen. This – this post right here – is exactly why I love coming to your blog. Why I keep coming back. Your page is honestly a beacon for real moms because life ISN’T always pretty, we don’t always see eye to eye, and sometimes the chaos is downright unbearable. But you have to find the beauty.

    You are a rock star. Thank you so much for sharing your journey 🙂

  • Reply
    Jenna
    January 25, 2017 at 10:49 pm

    Thank you for this! It was exactly what I needed to read today. I am a new mom to a 6 month old, and after a less than stellar performance as mama yeterday, I have been feeling pretty low today. Reading your blog is always something I look forward to and this particular entry was timed perfectly for me. Life is messy sometimes and its nice to know we are not alone. Thanks for being so honest.

  • Reply
    Laura
    January 25, 2017 at 10:55 pm

    Thank you for this! I love your blog and found it while I was pregnant with my first son, who will be four in March. I also love to create and frequently draw inspiration from what you share. It’s nice to know that you’re honest and keeping it real, too 🙂 xo

  • Reply
    Raven
    January 25, 2017 at 10:56 pm

    Love this! ❤️❤️❤️

  • Reply
    Amanda Boeckholt
    January 25, 2017 at 10:56 pm

    Such a great post!! Love reading your blog! From one fellow Iowa girl to another ❤️

  • Reply
    Julie
    January 25, 2017 at 10:58 pm

    You’re one of a kind!

  • Reply
    Denise Hebert
    January 25, 2017 at 10:59 pm

    Absolutely! Thank you for sharing that. I have always known it, in the years I have followed your blog. 😉 Keep being you…we love it all!

  • Reply
    Emma Price
    January 25, 2017 at 11:00 pm

    Jessica this is fantastic! Thank you for sharing 🙂

  • Reply
    Jocelyn
    January 25, 2017 at 11:01 pm

    Thank you so much for this. I have read your blog from the beginning and yours is one of the few I continue to read because of posts like this. Thanks for all you do!

  • Reply
    Emily M
    January 25, 2017 at 11:03 pm

    Oh my goodness, you just made me tear up. Thanks for those beautiful words.

  • Reply
    Jenna
    January 25, 2017 at 11:05 pm

    THIS is why I keep coming back to your blog! You’re honest, and let us know you’re one of us, but you choose not to focus on anything that might take away from the vision you have for your blog, which is (what I take to be) a space of inspiration and positivity. Thanks for this post. <3

  • Reply
    Kelly
    January 25, 2017 at 11:05 pm

    What a wonderful post! I’ve followed you since you were chalk-boarding Harper’s arrival. I’ve always felt you kept it real but this post just affirms my thoughts! You are so right, in the end, there is always beauty! Cheers!

  • Reply
    Tiffany Limoncelli
    January 25, 2017 at 11:06 pm

    And I hope you know, that after a long and often exhausting day of parenting my three little ones, I LOVE coming to your IG page & blog to see such cheery happiness. It’s refreshing and always brings a smile to my face. So thanks from one mama to another.

  • Reply
    Trisha
    January 25, 2017 at 11:09 pm

    Thanks for the welcome and genuineness =) I enjoy the happiness you express!

  • Reply
    Kathleen
    January 25, 2017 at 11:10 pm

    Love this!

  • Reply
    Jennefer Vizuete
    January 25, 2017 at 11:13 pm

    Wow. Thank you for this. Your life looks so amazing and it’s good to know that you are just like the rest of us. This made me teary-eyed. Here’s to a fabulous 2017!

  • Reply
    Erica Wolfe
    January 25, 2017 at 11:15 pm

    LOVE this so much! Your blog was the first that I followed back when you were pregnant with Harper (5 years ago! Crazy!), and I still anxiously await each and every post! I’m not a mama yet, but I can’t wait until I am because I’ve loved every resource and story you’ve shared, and can’t wait to come back to them when I’m experiencing motherhood. I was DEAD SET against minivans until I read your post about them. You’re honest and funny as hell, and I’m so glad you created this space to share with us!

  • Reply
    Jenna
    January 25, 2017 at 11:20 pm

    A good reminder that social media is seeing someone else’s life through rose colored glasses. There are imperfections, the grass is not always greener. Thank you for sharing your posts, uplifting and beautiful.

  • Reply
    Kristen
    January 25, 2017 at 11:21 pm

    Thank you thank you ! I have been following your blog for years finding inspiration in your early chalkboards. Now as a mom myself I come here to unwind and remember to see the beauty in each situation. Thank you for providing the space for us moms to be ourselves and not be judged

  • Reply
    Audrey
    January 25, 2017 at 11:28 pm

    Thank you, Jessica. Your blog is one of my happiest places to visit and has been for over 4 years now. When there is a new post, I know it will make me smile in some way. Thank you for being you and staying true to you…I can only imagine what it’s like to put yourself out to the world and I’m so thankful that you do. I am consistently inspired by you both creatively and in motherhood. Rock on, girl ❤

  • Reply
    Julie Stiles
    January 25, 2017 at 11:29 pm

    Jessica, thank you for writing this and being a beacon of light! You are a delight to follow and I’ve loved seeing your family grow – I feel like I’m rooting for your success without ever having met you. Thank you for your honesty as well. And glad to see you came out aging after the kitchen renovation and selling of your home – we are about to embark on the same projects with the same timing and I actually thought of you the other day when it all seemed to hit! Keep it up mama!!! Xo

    • Reply
      Julie Stiles
      January 25, 2017 at 11:30 pm

      Sorry that was supposed to say “came out shining” haha

  • Reply
    Emily
    January 25, 2017 at 11:32 pm

    Hi Jessica, I follow your blog and instagram, and was just about to ask you where all your “stuff” is (my house is a mess of toys, mail, laundry, trails of crumbs ) 😉 On that topic, would you share how you organize and store toys, seasonal decorations, your girls’ clothes, etc.? Thank you for encouraging hope and happiness in everyday moments; I have been repeating Mother Teresa’s quote about spreading peace and happiness starts at home by loving your family…..maybe a new print for your shop?? Love your blog!

  • Reply
    Callison Roberts
    January 25, 2017 at 11:50 pm

    I would LOVE to see a special every once in a while with one of your beautiful and perfect pictures beside a mess or a toddler tantrum or you guzzling beer. It would definitely be welcomed by everyone of us!

  • Reply
    Nitsa
    January 25, 2017 at 11:59 pm

    Just when I thought I couldn’t adore you more, you go and write everything that confirms you too, are human. Thank you so much for sharing these raw, honest words. XO

  • Reply
    Kristin
    January 26, 2017 at 12:08 am

    And this is why we love you! Perfect post!

  • Reply
    Alicen
    January 26, 2017 at 12:21 am

    Love ❤️

  • Reply
    Lindsay @ Lindsay's Sweet World
    January 26, 2017 at 12:28 am

    Beautiful post, Jessica! This is exactly why I love you! It’s always nice to hear that I’m not the only one struggling sometimes. Haha!

  • Reply
    Tricia
    January 26, 2017 at 12:33 am

    Thank you!!!! For doing what you do, and being who you are while doing it. SO MANY people appreciate it – please never stop! 🙂

  • Reply
    Nicole
    January 26, 2017 at 12:33 am

    Thanks for being transparent! I do sometimes look at moms on instagram and think “wow they always look cute and put together and everything in their house is perfect 😳 I haven’t even bothered to wear mascara in a week” that being said – your blog is my favorite and is very inspiring to me.

  • Reply
    Kate
    January 26, 2017 at 12:34 am

    Love it all and happy to have followed along since the chalkboard weekly days!

  • Reply
    Julie
    January 26, 2017 at 12:42 am

    Love this! 3>

  • Reply
    KD
    January 26, 2017 at 12:44 am

    AMEN Jessica! I have read your blog since the very beginning and will always be a loyal reader. Thank you for sharing your life with us~ xoxo

  • Reply
    Erin
    January 26, 2017 at 12:50 am

    Oh how I needed this today… Thank you!

  • Reply
    AT
    January 26, 2017 at 12:52 am

    SO sweet! I know that you strive to inspire and that you’re not trying to trick anyone into thinking that you’re perfect! I love to come to your site for inspiration and a smile. Lots of love!

  • Reply
    Allison Vidourek
    January 26, 2017 at 1:30 am

    LOVED every word of this!!! Thank you for your honesty, transparency and humor!! The world needs more of people like you! As a mom, it’s very refreshing to hear that others have many of the same struggles! I always enjoy your posts, but this one is extra special 🙂

  • Reply
    Kimber Hagans
    January 26, 2017 at 1:32 am

    So eloquently said Jessica! I am twice your age (probably even older than your dear Mom) and I follow your blog daily! LALALOVE YOUR BEAUTIFUL SQUARES of living life! This post tugged at my heart. You probably do not remember, but you were kind enough to help me locate the vintage inspired wooden box similar to the one in your posts. It was for my husband’s party (celebrating his journey with cancer). Well the cancer is back, we are fighting strong, and your beautifully spoken words (and creativity) move me each and every day! I, too, like to add a bit of creativity to each day, making it special for this journey we are on. Thank you for your brutal honestly. You Moms have it tough, best job in the world, but definitely the hardest. We are all in this together. What this world needs now is love~sweet~love. Best to you and your babies~~Kimber (Insta is Kimberroo)

  • Reply
    Miranda
    January 26, 2017 at 1:41 am

    I love this post so much!! I’ve been reading since the beginning and I love your honesty and watching your cute family grow.

  • Reply
    Kwynn
    January 26, 2017 at 1:43 am

    Your fun traditions and gorgeous style are why I was hooked by your blog but these posts are the reason why I LOVE to revisit it over and over again, your authenticity. Now excuse me while I go fish my favorite planner markers and washi tape out of my daughter’s smoothie. #thatREALmomlife

  • Reply
    Patty
    January 26, 2017 at 2:05 am

    Thank you for this post. So many times we forget that these little squares are just the highlights. Life is life and it is hard. Thank you for letting us share in your highlights.

  • Reply
    Chelsey
    January 26, 2017 at 2:06 am

    HI Jessica, for as long as I can remember I have wanted to be a mama. As I grew up and tried, in vain to choose a path I thought my life should go nothing worked, it wasn’t “easy”. I am now a mother of two, an 18 month old little angel/hellion named Greer and my sweat little man Cole. I know this is the job I was always meant to have.
    After the sudden and tragic loss of my mother, my best friend my babies kept me alive and going. It is hard being a mama and life gets in the way of all the beauty thats still out there in the world.
    I’m terrible at writing but I had to say thank you for reminding me to be creative and pause to appreciate what you have and what makes you get up each day, cause sometimes when you have been up since two and your head finally hits that pillow only to be woken up for the day five minutes later everyone needs a reminder. You are a great person. I hope what ever is challenging you, you keep your rose colored glasses on.

  • Reply
    christina
    January 26, 2017 at 2:26 am

    THIS is what has kept me coming back from the beginning and will keep me coming back. Keep sharing with honesty and bringing the beauty. You’re killin it.

  • Reply
    Kash
    January 26, 2017 at 3:06 am

    This is such a beautifully written post. Started following you and your blog a few years ago and I love reading it. You’re so real and genuine and I think every single mom and wife can relate to this (and many of your other posts). Thank you and keep it up!

  • Reply
    Megan
    January 26, 2017 at 3:21 am

    Thank you so much for this post! Parenthood and marriage are so hard and it’s easy to forget lots of people have challenges in this Pinterest/instagram world.
    Your blog is my very favorite and as a mom of two boys, I love seeing what your girls are up to! Keep doing what you do! ❤️

  • Reply
    Calli
    January 26, 2017 at 3:45 am

    I get the point of this and you can clearly say whatever you want – it’s your blog – but I’m honestly a little disappointed. After the events of the past few days, I’ve been unfollowing those mommy blogs that haven’t spoken out in support of the women’s marches.

    I’d hoped that, as a mother of three little girls, you would have joined the 2 million+ women worldwide in publicly expressing a belief that women should be considered equals rather than mere objects to be grabbed by their private parts. (You can vote Republican and still believe this is wrong, by the way.) Hopefully you’re at least saying something to your girls off-blog.

    I just hope that this is at least sincere and doesn’t stem from a desire not to tick off your (let’s face it) predominantly middle-class, white, Southern, Christian, and probably overwhelmingly Republican readership because they pay your bills.

    As for me, this is my last visit here. We cannot stay silent while our land and water is polluted (DAPL), those of different races and beliefs are discriminated against and refused entry (a wall Trump will NEVER be able to get Mexico to pay for, an executive order banning Muslims), and our own citizens are denied life-saving healthcare and healthcare that covers contraception so that we can plan the size of our own families (because whatever they replace the ACA with will not cover as much & the future head of HHS thinks women should have to pay for their own birth control completely out of pocket).

    I’m sure I’ll be flamed by other readers. To that I say: whatever. History will be on the side of those who stand up and say no in these uncertain times. You’ll see. I won’t be checking in (or reading this blog again). I’ll be off making phone calls, protesting, and trying to make this world a better place for my children. Silence makes us complicit in the consequences. The stakes are too high for silence.

    • Reply
      Jessica Garvin
      January 26, 2017 at 4:34 am

      I am sorry you feel that way & have chosen to stop reading here. But please do not make assumptions about me or anyone else who reads here, the entire message in this post is just because I don’t post about it, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. You have no idea the causes that I support, what we donate our time & money to or what we teach our children. I will not post about politics here regardless of the situation. But I do appreciate that you will not waste your time reading here & rather dedicating your time to something that is important to you. Happy trails 😉

    • Reply
      Emily
      January 26, 2017 at 9:39 pm

      It’s interesting to me that someone who is supposedly standing up for women’s rights completely just bashed the women she “thinks” reads this blog. Sorry you feel that way about Jessica but I happen to like her and her blog and she has no idea who I am and neither do you. Go on sister, save the world, but don’t think you aren’t a hateful person, you are. A true women’s rights activist would embrace all opinions of women even if they are not her own.

    • Reply
      Carly
      January 26, 2017 at 9:46 pm

      I understand everything you are saying, but before you go making assumptions…I am a JEWISH mother from NJ! I read this blog about MOTHERHOOD to relate to her and follow her day to days, fashion sense, recipes and just have a laugh or even a cry from time to time. I support women’s rights…but LOVE to come here to escape my facebook feed. I respect that Jessica keeps her views to herself and keeps this blog about MOTHERHOOD and NOT Politics. I have never commented and Jessica has no clue who I am! The bottom line…if you have nothing nice to stay don’t say anything at all!

    • Reply
      Melissa M.
      January 27, 2017 at 3:37 am

      Calli (*sigh*),
      Stereotyping is not on the liberal agenda- I’m a liberal democrat. And I’m Hispanic. And I live in California. And I’m Catholic-ish. I do not fit in any of your boxes And it is not constructive (or “on the right side of history”) to stereotype me, her readers, or anyone else. Most of us are moms here and obviously care about the state of our nation. However, I don’t come here for Jessica’s political views. I have my own, she has hers, and you have yours. How would her blogging about her politics – left, right, or center accomplish anything? That’s basically equivalent to a Facebook rant. Without her saying so, I am 100% sure Jessica does not condone the notion that women are objects. Duh. This blog is about love, kindness, kinship, friendship, family, and lifting each other up.

  • Reply
    Laura Remmick
    January 26, 2017 at 3:55 am

    Beautiful words that was just the reminder I needed. We mothers are so hard on ourselves, it is nice to know we are all on the same path. Love following your blog, and your cute family!

  • Reply
    Sarah S.
    January 26, 2017 at 4:01 am

    Thank you for this!! You’ve always kept it very real, which is extremely refreshing in the blogging world!

  • Reply
    Marie B.
    January 26, 2017 at 4:09 am

    Inspiring, eloquent and as beautifully written as always. I’ve loved your blog since the beginning and I always come back to it because it’s such a ray of sunshine. Keep doing you girl; it’s truly something.

    xo Marie
    Chocolate & Wine

  • Reply
    LeighAnn Standridge
    January 26, 2017 at 4:13 am

    Love this! ❤

  • Reply
    Kristin
    January 26, 2017 at 4:24 am

    Thank you for sharing this. I LOVE it. So often we get lost in seeing people’s perfect lives online. I love that you are completely honest with the blog in general no matter what is going on.

  • Reply
    SkuttleBum Apparel
    January 26, 2017 at 5:02 am

    I LOVE this!! Thank you for sharing and being so honest <3

  • Reply
    nancy
    January 26, 2017 at 5:12 am

    Absolutely love this! Thank You so much for sharing this!!

  • Reply
    Steph
    January 26, 2017 at 5:39 am

    Such a lovely thoughtful post. I enjoy your blog and seeing all your pretty pictures and inspiring projects. I can see enough chaos at home, so it’s nice to see all the beauty here.

  • Reply
    Jennifer
    January 26, 2017 at 7:48 am

    Love! Thank you for sharing.

  • Reply
    Darci Leach
    January 26, 2017 at 7:58 am

    Love❤️❤️❤️

  • Reply
    Shana James
    January 26, 2017 at 8:09 am

    I love you and your sweet family to pieces! You are amazing and such an inspiration❤

  • Reply
    Chelsea Stockner
    January 26, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Thank you for this, Jessica! Thank you for always being honest and someone I can relate to. It’s hard being a mom and everything we post on social media paints a perfect picture of what our lives our like. I don’t post pictures of myself crying in my car on my lunch break or videos of my daughter’s tantrums, but those things happen. Your pictures and blog posts always make me smile sometimes that’s all I need in the middle of a crazy afternoon at work or after a long day doing chores and chasing after my girls. Keep up the great work, mama!!

  • Reply
    Cassie McIntyre
    January 26, 2017 at 11:26 am

    I feel like we would be great friends if we lived in the same town. I started following you blog when I was pregnant with my daughter (now 16 months). I don’t belong to an mom groups and I’m really not into social media. Your the only blog I look forward to. I love how real you are and I have so much respect for you as a mom. 3 girls would kill me! Keep up the great work – virtual cheers from one mom to another.

  • Reply
    Jamie
    January 26, 2017 at 11:33 am

    ❤️❤️❤️

  • Reply
    Meghan Hein
    January 26, 2017 at 11:36 am

    Thanks for your transparency. It is one of the things I love most about this great space of yours.

  • Reply
    Cecile
    January 26, 2017 at 9:22 pm

    Awesome post, thank you for reminding us with the right words that we are all in the same boat. But at the end, you choose the right option: seeing the beauty and the positive side of things… how else could we keep going on without doing this, right?

  • Reply
    Nicole
    January 26, 2017 at 10:01 pm

    These things need to said sometimes, and I ABSOLUTELY LOVED reading this (while I sit at my desk, in my office, and contemplate whether or not I want to boycott attending a mandatory 2 day meeting out of town that I just received news of, because well… just because I hate leaving my two little crazies and my husband, and out pain in the butt dog AND I hate short notice…. I was mad and decided to glance over at my favorite blog, and for a second was occupied with something better.) I digress. My favorite part was, “I hope you know that just because I parent one way, doesn’t mean that I think it’s the only way. I never, ever want anyone to feel less than after reading here. Whether you breastfeed or formula feed, stay at home or work in an office, feed your kids all organic or macaroni and hot dogs twice a week, no matter who you voted for or who you pray to, you are welcome here.” It’s perfect. I posted something similar on my Facebook earlier this week because I was just at that point where my thought was, “you know what people!?”. With everything going on, and some of the things people are focused on … there are other things that need attention, both good & bad. Thank you for this post! I’m definitely going to be sharing.

  • Reply
    Dee
    January 26, 2017 at 10:31 pm

    What a great mom you are. We have all been there and all have and have had the feelings that go with it.
    Enjjoy every happy, sad, giggly, fun and adorable minute that goes with it!

  • Reply
    Rachel Hamilton
    January 27, 2017 at 12:14 am

    Love this so much! You are amazing, your blog is amazing! Thank you.

  • Reply
    Maggie
    January 27, 2017 at 1:21 am

    Jess- that was beautiful. As a new mom in a new house with piles of laundry and still figuring out where to put everything, I needed to read this. I want you to know that I have followed you since you were pregnant with Harper via Pinterest and your chalkboards. I thought to myself “I need to do that when I’m pregnant”. Although I did not follow through with that idea for myself (I’m not nearly as creative), I have read your advice, recommendations and crazy stories and continue to look forward to every post. You have helped me buy clothes for my baby, essentials for the nursery, I have the same crib, same sheepskin rug and a lot of the same clothing. You have a knack for picking out mom-friendly ideas that even I can handle as a new mom.

    You are a beautiful person inside and out, no matter if it’s covered in dry shampoo and yesterday’s makeup.

  • Reply
    Melissa M.
    January 27, 2017 at 3:18 am

    Thank you for sharing; is there something that prompted this post? Like a lot of other moms here I found your blog via Pinterest chalkboards when I was pregnant with my first in 2013. Your blog is so fun, positive, creative, and has given me a lot of ideas – p.s. I’m not good at chalk art lol. I’ve never thought you were hiding the realities of motherhood and/or the worry and anxiety that can sometimes come with being a mom/wife, working, etc. – we ALL experience some version of bad days. I figured you just used this as a happiness outlet for yourself and us. I also appreciate that you don’t get political or judgmental. I hope people aren’t leaving mean comments or being sassy! 🙁 I enjoy reading your blog and picking ideas up here and there; letting you try out products before I spend my money on them. 😀 Finally, per your posts we tried Chantilly Lace for our son’s Star Wars themed room and it is the perfect “storm-trooper white.” Take care and write on, friend!

  • Reply
    Jordana
    January 27, 2017 at 5:06 am

    This is beautiful written and so true! Thanks for writing this and for continuing to inspire so many of us 🙂 xx

  • Reply
    kristen
    January 27, 2017 at 5:28 am

    This was such an awesome post especially while there seems to be so much hate going on with the president and everything!! <3

  • Reply
    brittney
    January 27, 2017 at 6:44 am

    as if I didn’t already love your blog. thank you for this honesty. it’s put so well. and yes, thank you for sharing the beauty!

  • Reply
    Renee
    January 27, 2017 at 8:34 am

    Great post. You should do an updated FAQ! It’s been awhile!!

  • Reply
    Zofia
    January 27, 2017 at 10:56 am

    Love!!!

  • Reply
    LORI
    January 27, 2017 at 11:02 am

    Great, great post!

  • Reply
    Chelsea
    January 27, 2017 at 9:12 pm

    I love this post! You have the most precious family and I really enjoy hearing about the things yall do and really love seeing how you are decorating your new home. Your blog is one of my absolute favorites to read and it really inspires me to continue to grow my blog.

    I was curious how you were able to get some of your posts to scroll at the top of your page. Would you mind telling me how you did that?

    Happy Friday!

  • Reply
    Ashley
    January 27, 2017 at 9:14 pm

    Love this! Thank you. I love that you choose to see the good in every situation, although not every situation is good. Everyone needs a little more positivity in their lives. Thank you for being someone that makes us laugh, sometimes so hard I have tears streaming down my face. The world needs more of that.

  • Reply
    Nicole O
    January 28, 2017 at 12:44 am

    Holy cow what a beautiful post! Thank you for taking the time to write this. I love the reminder that you really are just like me. I use dry shampoo too much and need Starbucks just to get through the day sometimes! Thank you for being a positive blogger. Your posts are always reminders that, no matter where we are, there is always something beautiful, funny, and normal that we all can relate to. Thank you for being an inspirational mama even while you probably live in constant chaos with three little ladies running around! Thank you for bringing happiness and humor into what is the most difficult job in the world (being a great mama). And thank you for all the décor inspiration, too 🙂

  • Reply
    Christen
    January 29, 2017 at 12:22 am

    Thank you 😌

  • Reply
    Amanda Braun
    January 29, 2017 at 2:58 am

    Thank you for these glimpses of “real life”. It’s so refreshing. I, too, have followed your blog from the beginning and I continue to enjoy each and every post. You do all of the things you said you hoped for in your blog (leaving readers happy and inspire,d and connecting). I read your blog and feel over and over like we could be best friends. Haha! I’ve said “AMEN, sister!!” to more posts than I can count! Thank you😊 I will remain a faithful reader until you call it quits!😉

  • Reply
    lauren
    January 31, 2017 at 10:34 pm

    I have to just say that i love you for saying this. Its funny, in this blog and social media world there are so many that come across as slightly boastful or showing that perfect life. I can’t say I have ever felt that about yours. You have great style and inspiration. You share a good portion of ‘real life’ but don’t come across in a way that you think you are better at anything than anyone around you. So thank you for sharing, and as others have said… Love!

  • Reply
    Katie @thebrooksielife
    February 15, 2017 at 2:15 pm

    Needed this today!! Thank you so much for your honestly and warm heart! I love reading your blog!!

  • Reply
    Stevie Jackson
    June 29, 2017 at 5:58 am

    Jessica,

    I rarely comment on blog posts. But I’ve been following you since your very first chalkboards on Pinterest posts & you’re an inspiration. I started blogging around the same time as you & didn’t keep up the way I wanted to. About a year & a half ago I was inspired by you to start an Instagram for my blog & im so glad I did. Thank you for the inspiration. Anyway, this post was so good I had to comment. I tend to see your pictures & think “why doesn’t my life look like that?!” Then it hit me. People look at my life & think that too. Reading this was not only refreshing but it’s such a good reminder to keep it real. Thanks girl. Xoxoxo @sincerelystevieblog

    • Reply
      Jessica Garvin
      June 29, 2017 at 6:49 am

      this is the sweetest comment, thank you so much for your kind words and loyal readership!!!!XO

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    September 23, 2017 at 11:18 pm

    CRYING. Crying because you touched me. I wish we could just have a beer together right now! I could go on and on but I already feel like you get me. And I get you. Cheers my friend. 🍻

  • Reply
    Morgan
    October 4, 2017 at 7:06 pm

    So beautiful and inspiring ! I love following your blog and your ig accounts. You are so authentic and inspirational!

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