A Haines Home Companion: Looking Round, Feeling Light

It’s 5:15, the time of evening that most mommies start staring at the clock to will its hands into faster motion – the time of day, today, that I’ve chosen to sit in my bed with my computer and a jar of pickles.

The 22 week mark has hit, and I’m being about as cliche as I can possibly be. Could I dip these pickles in icecream? Why yes I sure could.

Spring and second trimester seem slathered with goofy juice. For example, I forgot to add the chicken in our chicken pot pie the other night. It must be the happy vitamin D beaming through. And the forsythia. Their yellow flowering twigs shoot up at the edges of driveways, accenting rusty yard cars and frou-frou gated communities alike. Everything seems to lighten up.

I wake in the night, thankful, and put my hands on Seth’s arm. Smile in the dark. He doesn’t even know. Then we wake in the morning, and I snarl at him for drinking coffee, though he sees the grin in my eyes.

The parts of life that can’t be written are hard, but we are still light.

This Lenton Season has been the toughest and therefore the best, a time for bests. Keeping my computer off for some of it has made me different, helped me pray for different things and see home in a new way. My best friend saw poverty in the eyes of a child in Guatemala. It has made me fall in love with her all over again, and with God, too – though pain be rammed through the center of it.

My girlfriends in our “home group” and in my accountability mornings, they bring gladness to me, beautiful feet, have the good news wrapped even in sorrows. I have brothers, too, that are backbone. The Sunday-school teachers for my boys send me off with my mouth full of gratitude.

I have one here that is GF/CF. No gluten. No dairy. I’m a southern woman cooking like I live in a foreign desert land. The sand is rice. Everything crumbles, smells funny. I angle every meal for one child, and he thinks it’s the worst. It’s a stage of battling the nothing-rights. Gratitude. Gratitude. Gratitude.

Some trials can’t be written until they’re over. But gratitude can be.

I love labeled jars filled with white flours that I don’t know how to use.

I love the rare girlfriends that don’t know your space issues and lie in your lap so you can play with their hair, just when you think you might die of missing your little sister.

I love the gentle baby tap dancing inside. When we didn’t get to move when expected and when I’m huffing down the seconds until I get a washer and dryer, those taps unzoom my perspective, make me see the world wider.

When I go to the beach in a few months, in my large body, my eyes might zoom in at my thighs, but I can choose, too, to look out long into the round horizon,

as if forever were right now.

About me


When You’re Not the Fixer
October 24, 2015
Rosie the Prophetess
March 06, 2014
To Love the Shape of Your Life
January 16, 2014
Cursed Be the Woman
March 06, 2013
The Chains of Worry: About a Skinny Girl Who Wrote an Eating Disorder Book
October 24, 2012
Made for the Party
September 19, 2012
The Feeding Tube
July 19, 2012
No Goodbye
February 15, 2012
A Haines Home Companion: On Sharing Real Life
September 23, 2011


Reply April 8, 2011

i just love. your cute belly. your girlfriends. your longing for sister. touching seth's arm in the night. i just love.

We are THAT family
Reply April 8, 2011

I love you. (your new blog, too). And your words. Saying sweet prayers for you, sister

    Reply April 10, 2011

    I love you back, Kristen. Your prayers are powerful, Woman of God.

Reply April 8, 2011

Uh-oh. Your cute belly makes me want to be pregnant. Only problem is that The Husband had this little operation that starts with a "vas" and ends with an "ectomy". Oh the drastic things we've done out of the dire of our circumstances - 3 boys in 3 years starting at the age of 20 and with a husband who travelled all the time taboo t.

Yep, we recently had to grieve over the vasectomy choice that we would now change . . . And wonder if there is another plan for us holding more babies . . .

You're adorable. I am SO happy for you.


    Reply April 10, 2011


    I know so many who have this same story. God brings children to us in amazing ways. I really believe that.

    When I told my daddy I was having my 4th boy. He laughed and then he teared up, and as if to prophesy, he said, "You'll have so many granddaughters and grandsons."

    Thank you for being excited with me.

Reply April 8, 2011

You love beautiful.

    Reply April 10, 2011

    Thank you. That's a really cool thing you just said.

suzannah {so much shouting, so much laughter}
Reply April 8, 2011

everything about this is lovely and true. there is something about lent that puts things in perspective, isn't there?

    Reply April 10, 2011

    Yes. You're so right. Last year, Lent got easier and easier, and for both me and Seth, this year it has only gotten harder.

    Hard is good when you look through the right lens.

laura@life overseas
Reply April 9, 2011

love the new site! love the look, and love reading your words here. and LOVE seeing those cute pictures of you looking precious with that baby-growing.

love the reminder to be grateful,

    Reply April 10, 2011

    Thank you, Laura. I hope Thailand is being good to you.

emily freeman
Reply April 9, 2011

This might be my favorite post you've ever written. But of course, I always think that.

    Reply April 10, 2011

    You never say anything that doesn't make me smile. Thank you, friend.

Southern Gal
Reply April 9, 2011

You have the cutest baby belly! Love your words here.

Betty Beguiles
Reply April 9, 2011

Oh my gosh! How cute are you? And also, I love this post! You have such a way with words. :)

Reply April 9, 2011

This post is gorgeous.

I love this: "I wake in the night, thankful, and put my hands on Seth’s arm. Smile in the dark. He doesn’t even know." I do that to my husband all the time.

And I love this: "I love the gentle baby tap dancing inside. When we didn’t get to move when expected and when I’m huffing down the seconds until I get a washer and dryer, those taps unzoom my perspective, make me see the world wider." I so get that. And I'm so thankful for it, too.

Thank you for sharing.

Flower Patch Farmgirl
Reply April 9, 2011

That space issue thing! Oh, I relate. And it is always fun when someone comes along, unaware. I get to try out a foreign feeling then, and be a bit of a different version of myself. This is beautiful, all of it.

LLH Designs
Reply April 10, 2011

I hopped over at Emily's recommendation and am so glad I did! I love the way you're choosing to see and choosing to give thanks. I laughed at your "space issues" and your not knowing how to use GF flour. Right there with you on both! God is good.

Blessings to you and a very happy Lord's Day!

Kelly @ Wisdom Begun
Reply April 10, 2011

I. love. your. words. Truly, you are so precious, and look pretty darned cute as a pregnant lady! (I'm only a teensy bit jealous. I blow up like a whale when pregnant.)

Reply April 10, 2011

This post made my cry and I don't even know why. It's just beautiful and true and authentic...all things you. I'm glad Emily reminded me to come over. And you are the cutest pregnant mama I've ever seen. Seriously.

Karin @ 6byHisDesign
Reply April 10, 2011

"Hard is good when you look through the right lens."

I think I'm in love.

Karin @ 6byHisDesign
Reply April 10, 2011

...with your quote...


Dawn Camp
Reply April 10, 2011

Love you, darlin'. And that trip to the beach? I hope it's the one where I'll be. :-)

Jeri T.
Reply April 14, 2011

The daily grind. Especially when it involves health and specified diet. Learning about GF here too. You should see our cupboards. You'd love our labeled grains, flours, beans etc. All these "_____-free" things.

It's an adventure. Thank You God you are with us in it all.

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Reply May 20, 2014

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Stacey Scahill
Reply October 2, 2015

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