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A Peek Into Our Week: Turning our home into a film studio!

We had a full week last week and I finally have a chance to sit down and write a recap of it! Here are some peeks into our week to give you a behind-the-scenes look into our daily lives…

A Peek Into Our Week

After 5 years of training, I now have my own in-house breakfast chef. Fried eggs are his specialty and he can make them completely by himself now (I just oversee since it involves a stove!)

Moms of littles, it might feel like all you do is change diapers and clean up messes and cook food and wipe noses and fold yet another load of laundry and feel constantly pulled in 15 different directions. But hear me on this: someday soon, all that effort and training and work is going to pay off. And even though right now it might feel like that day will never come, it will. Don’t give up! It will be worth it!

A Peek Into Our Week

All on her own, Kathrynne decided she wanted to start helping Silas learn how to read. He’s been discouraged because blending and phonics don’t come easily to him (unlike math) and he really wants to learn how to read.

So Kathrynne asked me if while I continue to work with him on phonics and sounding out words, she could teach him some sight words so he could at least read more than the handful of words he knows now.

Seeing them work so hard together on this just touches me deeply and blesses this mama-heart in big ways! These are the mothering moments I will forever treasure!

A Peek Into Our Week

On Monday afternoon, I went to the coffee shop to soak in a little quiet before a busy week of filming began. It’s always good to get some writing and blogging work done and write love notes to some of my favorite people.

{One of my goals for 2015 was to write a love note to each of my kids every month. It’s a simple thing, but the act of stopping to reflect and express appreciation and admiration not only can deeply impact another life, but it’s also so good for your soul. If you are too busy to stop and say “thank you” and “I love you” — you are just plain too busy.}

A Peek Into Our Week

Tuesday, we spent the day prepping our house for the film shoot, spending hours meeting about the scripts for each of the videos– revising/rewriting/and editing, etc. — and then our team went out to dinner that night.

These two girls and all their hours and hours of behind-the-scenes work made the filming possible. I am incredibly grateful for all they invest in my life on a daily basis (Joy is one of my managers and Ashley is my brand-new, amazing executive assistant!)


Wednesday, we filmed all day long. And I truly mean that. 🙂

We started at 8:30 a.m. and I got done around 9:30 p.m.We had a few short breaks, but we were mostly working every minute of that whole entire time. I will have a whole new appreciation for well-done videos and course and films in the future!

Whew! It was exhausting and it took me awhile to find my groove, but once I found it, things got easier and easier as we went along.

I learned so much from this film shoot — what works, what doesn’t work, and how I need to better prepare. Hopefully, the next time we attempt a project like this, it will go much smoother as a result of what we learned!

For those of you who are wondering: we filmed 14 “days” of videos on a subject I’m fiercely passionate about: using your mornings well to set your day up for success. It was a lot of work, but it was worth it because we truly believe the final product will be one that powerful impacts and inspires thousands of lives! I can’t wait to share it with you very soon!



A Peek Into My Week
On Thursday, we shot hours of our every day home and lives in action. From our morning routine and making breakfast (in our PJs) to homeschooling to reading aloud to household chores and much more, we wanted to give you a really authentic look into how our mornings run.

It was another very long day, but it was fun and stretching — and such a blessing to get to do this as a family. Our kids learned so much about film and production today and were such troopers for all the takes and re-takes we did!

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On Friday, we had a pretty laid-back, family day. And then I took this beautiful girl to get her hair done all fancy for the Father-Daughter dance at church.

She had a BLAST — not only getting all fancy, but also getting to have a very special evening with her daddy! I failed to get pictures of she and Jesse when they were all dressed up, but they had professional pictures taken at the dance, so I can’t wait until we get those back!

A Peek Into Our Week

Saturday morning, I woke up at 3:40 a.m. to catch an early flight to Denver to go see some of my dearest friends: Michele Cushatt, Kathi Lipp, and Renee Swope. I was supposed to get into Denver at 11:30 a.m. However, it turned out to be a crazy morning of mishaps and airport fiascos and I didn’t even make it to Chicago until after 10:30 a.m. and then had to wait for the only available flight out to Denver from Chicago — 5 1/2 hours later.

But instead of feeling frustrated over things that were outside my control, I decided to choose gratitude and just enjoy the quiet and opportunity to read and write than an unexpected long layover at the airport afforded me!

The four of us have spent the last two days laughing, crying, talking, laughing, crying, and just soaking up the opportunity for all of us to be together. These girls are some of my dearest friends and we’ve been itching to get together — especially because we’ve been walking through Michele’s cancer and surgeries and chemo and radiation with her and it hurts our hearts so much that we all live in different states. Watching Michele suffer and struggle and go through so much has been incredibly hard for each of us these past few months, so to finally be together again has been very healing for all of us.

We are also excited to be here to celebrate the launch of Michele’s book (it officially releases today!). I’ll be sharing more about her book and how it’s impacted me later on this week. For now, I just want to encourage you to go check it out on Amazon. It is truly one of the most well-written books I’ve ever read.

If you (or someone you know) is going through a really difficult time right now, I cannot encourage you enough: go pick up a copy of Michele’s book. You will laugh, you will cry, and you will be so encouraged by her words and story.

How was YOUR week this past week? Tell us about it in the comments!

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  • Jaime says:

    What a busy but fun-sounding week! My week was crazy. Started up a blog on Sunday, our wedding anniversary was Thursday, and I had gone to the ER that morning because of heart palpitations that wouldn’t (and still won’t) go away and everything is coming back normal. This week has been frustrating and rewarding at the same time!

  • Victoria says:

    Our week last week seems so different than this week. Last week was snow and ice, this week is spring thaw and warmer temperatures. I have ran outside twice already and took a walk the third day. I am soaking it up. I bet your daughter had a great time at the daddy daughter dance. I remember when our daughter was little my husband took my daughter and her two friends out to tea. They all went in their princess dresses and crowns. I have a picture of her there. It is one of my favorites she is grinning from ear to ear.

  • Elizabeth S says:

    Hi Crystal,
    I noticed that Kathrynne is interested in doing sight words. We love this resource, specially the free games that you can customize.

  • Kalie says:

    I am looking forward to your video on mornings. Thanks for sharing about the process here.

  • Emily says:

    What a fun sneak peak. I was excited to hear more about your project, especially once I saw your subject of: using your mornings well to set your day up for success. I have started an early morning habit and it’s partially because of the morning encouragement I have read here!

    I actually enjoy getting “stuck” at the airport. You are limited on what you can do, so it’s the perfect time to walk, read or write!

  • Cheryl says:

    It has been a more peaceful week for me and the family. I was able to meet my mom after I dropped the kids off at school. We went out for breakfast and took a nice walk, enjoying the Michigan Spring air. My dad passed away last October and it was good to have some mother/daughter time-my parents had been married over 50 years. I also have been more organized in my day to day activities around the home and feel better and calmer with everything. Praise God for the beautiful Spring that is almost here! Thanks for you blog and daily encouragement too!

  • Linda says:

    What a week you’ve had, and I am so looking forward to the videos!

    My week was uneventful, although the 2 days of warmer weather was such a treat when it’s felt like winter will never end.

    Off topic: What does that Jesus plaque say that is above your kitchen table, and where did you get it?

    I love your blog and have been a fan for many, many years! Thanks for all you do for all of us!

  • Becki says:

    So exciting! Your house makes a great studio, and the pajama look is great. I love all the bright colors on you, too! 🙂

  • lyss says:

    Looking forward to the videos…sounds like something I need! Here’s to hoping they’ll be free on your blog…
    Okay, totally off subject, but I love your home decor! Love the rug and curtains. I’m wanting to do double curtains in my bedroom, but double rods are insanely expensive! I saw a tip to use a bungee cord for the sheer curtain behind. I might try that. Or what did you use?

  • Christine says:

    Regarding phonics with Silas–have you tried the Leap Frog videos for phonics? My youngest, (we homeschool too), watched them as part of his “reading” lessons in kindergarten and it helped him tremendously.

    I also recommend All About Spelling. This program is visual and incorporate phonics with spelling.

    I’ve heard All About Reading is good but have never tried it.

    • Christine says:

      PS We use All About Spelling and my youngest is in 3rd grade is is pretty good at spelling. I can’t say he’s fantastic but does not have too much trouble sounding out words.

  • Leslie says:

    I *love* how you turned 5 1/2 hours at an airport (frustrating!) into an opportunity for productivity. I would have likely grabbed a magazine and a coffee and people watched for awhile.
    PS- Our family was behind yours this weekend at Sweet Cece’s (minus you :(- ). I had a moment where I thought, I know these children! Lol!
    We all enjoyed the live music while we celebrated my littlest’s 3rd birthday. Randomly, some of our best friends walked in while we were there and we got to share our yogurt together and just ‘be’. I love this small town.

  • Jennifer says:

    I love the fancy hair!!!!!! Please share the formal photo with us when you get it 🙂

  • Michelle says:

    I’m excited to see your videos! I would love to see how you (and that darling family!) run your mornings.

    I taught public school for a number of years (before becoming a stay-at-home mom) and had a good experience, and I always thought my kids would go. Now my oldest is due to start school this fall, and his food allergies are so severe that I’m not comfortable sending him just yet. So I am unexpectedly becoming a homeschooler. After a lot of prayer, I feel good about this decision, and my teaching degree will certainly be a blessing. I’m finding more and more reasons that homeschool is great! That said, I have no homeschool experience–I’ve never seen it in action or seen how to work it in while having 2 younger children, and I find myself poring over tons of curriculum options. I would love to hear more homeschool specifics! Particularly the mechanics and organization. I went back in your archives and found some of your recommended resources–thanks! Any big tips for a brand-new, inexperienced homeschooler?

  • Tiffany says:

    I was stuck in airports a couple months ago… I volunteered to get bumped off our flight home from a ski vacation, so I spent an extra night alone without my luggage (the only bad part) and then the whole next day was spent mostly on long layovers in airports. I have several mom friends who told me they were jealous! I felt very fortunate to have the opportunity to be BY MYSELF for an extra 24 hours and I soaked it all in! I probably won’t get that opportunity again so I made the best of it. A blessing in disguise! Looking forward to your videos… Mornings are something I am getting better at but I still need all the help I can get 🙂

  • Antonella says:

    Wow, so interesting this whole video thing 🙂
    At work I’m regularly on sets overseeing shooting photographs, and was wondering about filming. Please let us know more…

  • I absolutely cannot WAIT to see this, Crystal! We only filmed 4 10-minute videos for the shoot I did this week, but WOH–it wore me out! (We did multiple takes, so it took most of the day). I can only imagine 16!! I cannot wait!!!

  • Marie says:

    CrystaI l always love when you give us a peek into your week. Can’t wait to hear more about the video’s. You encourage me daily! Because of that encouragement I’ve started new routine in the mornings. I wake up at 5:30 for devotions and prepping my day. There is alot going on in my life right now and was struggling. I knew I needed devotions but couldn’t make it happen. I don’t enjoy waking early but it’s uninterupted time and i can really focus. My sister in law was diagnosed w/ breast cancer and just finishd chem and has 6 weeks of radiation. My mom just started chemo. My children are being teased at school for birth defects. And a very complicated medical situation is going on with my hubands sister in law that required an emergency trip for us to drive to Chicago. I’m so thankful I have Jesus!!! You add on top everyday struggles and mom battles and it’s alot. The last week I saw a HUGE difference in my interactions with my family. I was not as stressed. I’m also trying to change my eating and start exercising. I have to remember that even small steps is still progress.

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