Welcome to the Hickstionary, a landing spot for all things H family.
I'm Heidi. He's Rusty. And together we have our beautiful babe, Beckett and a furry menace, Dakota.
I mostly use this space to brag about how awesome the kid is, whine about how naughty the dog is & share an occasional deep thought.
Thanks for hanging out with us as we figure out this [blessed] life!

If you are looking for my photography blog (where words don't tend to fall out of my mouth nearly as freely), visit {captured by} heidi.

Friday, October 17, 2014

the hardest thing

Recently, while talking to a friend about pregnancy after loss, she asked, 'what is the hardest thing?'

The hardest thing.

The hardest thing was the fear that gripped me two minutes after the positive pregnancy test.

The hardest thing was learning to trust God. Again.

The hardest thing was not even being able to bring myself to look at baby girl's first and second set of ultrasound pictures. And having no idea where they are now.

The hardest thing was telling people.

The hardest thing was being labeled 'high risk- multi miscarriages + 2nd tri miscarriage.'

The hardest thing is watching people I love lose their precious babies. And knowing.

The hardest thing is feeling betrayed by my own body and not trusting it. To not marvel at the miracle it is working right now.

The hardest thing is sitting in the OB waiting room surrounded by happy pregnant people with no worry about what their appointment might bring. Every time.

The hardest thing is listening to people due around the same time as me make plans and talk about the future…. while I'm too afraid to.

The hardest thing is the guilt I feel about not planning for her future or not being excited or enjoying every moment of my pregnancy with her.

The hardest thing is watching a two year old boy grow closer and closer to his sister every day, already loving and protecting her fiercely, and just begging God to let him meet her.

The hardest thing is the battle of faith and fear inside my heart.

The hardest thing is learning to trust God. Again.

And again.

Learning to trust that all He has for me is good. Even when it hurts, even when it's ugly, even when it doesn't look good at all- ALL He has for me is good.

He's been working this lesson in my heart for some time now and reminding me to lean into Him when I can't do it on my own.

He teaches us that all our days our numbered. Whether we get to keep our babies just 16 weeks in our womb, just a few short years this side of heaven, or if we get to watch them grow up and grow old- all of our days are numbered. No matter how long or short that number, as much as I love my sweet babies, He loves them even more.

When my now two year old was a newborn, I worried so much, so much, about SIDS. We had waited so long for that sweet boy and I had a hard time trusting that God would let me keep him. One day I realized once I stopped worrying about SIDS, I would be worrying about furniture falling on him, a car running him over, middle schoolers hurting his feelings, him behind the steering wheel, him going off to college, etc, etc, etc. The list of worries never ends as our children grow older. We can add to them and multiply them times infinity if we want to. But the worry won't change the fact that God has got this. And God is trustworthy. And God is good.

The hardest thing… no…. the thing is, I'm learning to let go of the fear and learning to trust God. Again.

'Faith is not about what I believe God is going to do for me to change my circumstances. It is about what I believe about God, in spite of my circumstances.' God is good. When He gave us our precious son, He was good. When He cares for our babies in Heaven, He is good. When He gifted us with hope again in our sweet baby girl, He is good.

The hardest thing…. The thing is…. I'm putting my faith and trust in Him.

Sunday, October 12, 2014


We've been running around like crazy for the last (I lost track of how many...) days. We just got home from a long weekend. The two year old is checking the dog's teeth, declaring them to be stinky. And I have a ton of stuff I should be doing. But I'd really like to just put my feet up. That said. If I don't post these pics now, I'm not sure when I'll get to it. Thus the 'awesome' post coming your way. A weekend full of cousins is always a good weekend. Happy (what day is it again?) Sunday?

It's all boy cousins on daddy's side. These cool dudes were all dressed up for papa's wedding. (Yep, we totally forgot to get B's haircut for the occasion. We're awesome like that.)

B has a new baby girl cousin on mommy's side. He was pretty smitten with Clara. His aunt tried to ask him what his sisters name was and I told him to say it's a secret. When we got home he wanted to know if her name was still (fill in the blank with her name) or if it was 'Secret.' Poor kid was so confused. :) He declared Baby Clara was a very nice baby and he really, really liked her. He also noted she just went like this (pretend sleeping). He thought that was pretty okay. ;) 

Cousins pic. The girls are outnumbering the boys.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Late night random thoughts

B is at the most fun age right now. He says the most hilarious things and cracks us up several times a day. As silly as he is, he's also a thinker. As active as he is, he's also an observer. As wild as he is, he's also the sweetest, most tender hearted boy I know. Every day I wonder how we could possibly love him more and the next day we just do.

He's super into trains, trucks, planes, cars and Toy Story of Terror! (We've already watched it three times this week so we are well on our way to last years record of 1,392,673 times). We limit tv to before bedtime with daddy and sometimes before nap but a lot of days lately we've made it to the end of the day without a single screen time request (yay).

He loves to sing songs. His favorites are 'the spider song,' 'twinkle star song,' and 'little man song.' (Itsy Bitsy Spider, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, Zacheus was a Wee Little Man.) He's been counting slightly more often but still only on his own accord. While he was once able to name every letter with his magnet letters, we added in some flash card letters and other letter games and the new looks of the letters have him totally confused. Turns out we shouldn't have learned letters with bubble letter shaped magnets. ;)

He loves story time, seeing his church friends and going to the orchard. He's super close to 100 parks (90 and counting). And he talks about his baby sister all the time. Today he hid under the blanket with my belly whispering to her and did not want me in on the secret. That may not be a great sign of what's to come. ;) His name ideas are donuts, apple (usable these days for sure), Mickey Mouse hicks, Donald duck hicks, Stella (his friend's baby sister's name) and Kristyn (another friend's mom's name). He has two other ideas that are actually on the list which kind of surprised me. Usually if I mention a name he says that's a dog name. :)

Speaking of baby sister, according to the app she is 6.25" long and the size of a russet potato. It's so strange to me how they compare their size to food each week and it generally just makes me hungry for food we don't have in the house. Speaking of food, I've been feeling a lot better this week and able to eat more often so that has been great.

Physically things are starting to feel a lot better. Emotionally I still have a good number of hot mess moments. I still get nervous about each appointment they are checking things on me at. My next one is next Wed if you feel like praying. We are having a hard time getting my thyroid where it needs to be and they are following up on another possible issue with me. I think the worst thing about what we went through last time is not being worried if baby will be okay but not trusting that my body will take care of baby. I really felt betrayed by my body and fight those feelings still.

It seems the enemy has enjoyed filling me with feelings of betrayal and rejection lately.

But God has more in store for me than that. As much as I've been hurt lately, we've had so much more good to thank Him for. We have some great people in our corner that are praying for and encouraging us every single day. I'm so thankful for them.

12:34. B just noticed the numbers on the ceiling from our newish clock tonight. I'm noticing them now too and well aware morning will come too soon. I'll leave the proof reading on this one up to you. Coming from the iphone, there's probably lots of mistakes for you to fix. We'll blame auto correct. ;)


Sunday, September 21, 2014

It's a.....


Baby girl 'donuts' (one of big brother's current favorite names) is due in March and we're all super excited!

(Big thanks to Sara at Like A Fox Photography for the family shots!)

Wednesday, September 10, 2014


I'm not sure there's a perfect balance of work/life once you become a mom. There's no special formula and definitely not just one answer. I LOVE staying home with B but hate working till midnight once he goes to sleep. I am so thankful for the flexible work schedule I have and know I have it pretty good, but I'm not sure it will ever feel 'perfect.' It's kind of like a baby's (and toddler's for that matter!) schedule... as soon as you get them figured out, they've moved on to something else to switch things up on you. I have a feeling my work schedule will continue to evolve as B grows and our needs change.

That said- we have a pretty great set up right now. As he started napping less and less through the summer, it became apparent I was going to need a chunk of time other than bedtime that I could get some work done. After a lot of consideration, we decided to put B in daycare one morning a week. He goes Wednesday mornings till 1pm and it's a great time for him. He plays with other kids, follows someone else's schedule, has to obey another adult, eats lunch with his peers, and just has a great time. He gives me a play by play of what goes on and he's always excited to go back.

I wasn't sure how it would go over..... the first week I asked him if he had fun. He wouldn't answer me in front of his teacher but as we got home and I asked him again he said, 'yeah.... but I just really missed you mommy!!' He gave me a hug I thought would last forever as the tears welled up in his eyes. My mama heart was pretty sad for him. His daddy told us we were both softies and to suck it up. ;) The next week after we got home I asked him again if he had fun. This time he said, 'Oh yeah!!!!' I asked if he missed me, his response- 'NOOOPE!' Oh how quickly they grow up. :)

Overall it's been a great addition to his schedule and he's doing well there.

Things are going great here on Wednesday mornings as well. ;)

I'm able to get caught up on some editing and am hoping that this winter as work slows down I'll be able to actually stay caught up on emails and keeping our house clean. (Emphasis on the 'hoping.') I typically play a sermon from Elevation Church in the background (which I'm not able to otherwise when I'm editing because there's always someone around vying for my attention) or (if we're being real here) the previous night's episode of 'Dance Mom's.' My sessions this week were rescheduled due to the rain (darn rain) and I even had time to sneak in a non-interrupted shower (and this blog post) today.

Yes, I totally love being home with B and I am SO thankful for my work schedule that allows me to do so, but this is a nice change for our family too. B is thriving and growing and his mama is trying to grow along side him.

Please don't talk to me about kindergarten.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

MIA. Again.

Someone (full disclosure: it was my husband) asked why I'd been MIA on social media (Instagram) lately. I didn't really have a great answer. But I had a lot of excuses.

I've been trying really hard (and not so hard on other days) to ditch the phone as much as possible. Those phone ditched moments are usually when the goodness happens that I would otherwise be instagramming.

Summer was emotionally and physically draining. Mostly in a good way (vacation, splash parks, mountain top God experiences) but still draining. The thought of logging on and processing other people's experiences on top of my own was more than I could handle most days.

The resident two year old prefers running around in non Instagram appropriate attire most of the time. When I say non appropriate I mean they would shut down the account and  lock me out. As the kid told his grandma on the phone recently, he 'just really likes bein nakey.'

And  one of the biggest reasons.... It's the busy season for photography. I may not see you again till November.  Unless you have a session scheduled. ;)

In other news. I did post an IG pic today.

I'm semi caught up on editing and requested a date night to celebrate. It's church night so our babysitters were all busy which meant  little man got to tag along with us. We worked more on the napkin in the lap and using good table manners. He even started eating his pasta by twirling it onto the fork tonight. Watching the fork twirling and hearing him say things like, 'actually I want the orange wedges please' and I'm having flash forwards (is that a thing?) to him as an actual little man  out at a restaurant without his mama and that's too much for me to think about.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

beach life

In case you missed my over gramming all week.... we spent the week at Lake Michigan. First in Chicago, followed by a pit stop at Indiana Dunes and ending in Michigan at the ocean (I mean lake).

If you ask B his favorite part of vacation he will tell you 'driving the firetruck' (thanks Chicago FD) and 'the racer car drive' (thanks fast taxi cab dude). R will just tell you 'Chicago' (he totally feeds off the energy of the city) and I'd tell you the beach (because, duh).

First off- how have I lived 5 1/2 hours from this place and never known about it?! It seriously feels like being at the ocean. The sand is amazing, the dunes are gorgeous and the waves are so peaceful. I'd love to spend all of my summers there. :)

Second- I have a ton of work to catch up on but I'm letting myself edit one vacation picture for every 25 work pictures.... clearly I haven't gotten very far yet. ;)

Hopefully I'll be back with a proper vacation update soon. It was a great week!

Saturday, July 26, 2014


June was a rough month. With reminders around every corner of what wasn't going to be, it was not an easy month to get through. But July brought healing. Reminders of miracles and reasons to trust from a God that loves me. This particular night (pictured below) was a huge part of that healing. The healing didn't come from the lantern but in a little boy earnestly closing his eyes and asking Jesus to let him see His face. The healing didn't come from the images taken that night but from the nearness of God and grace He pours out on us. I had no intention of ever sharing these images but they are such a strong reminder of God's grace, love and faithfulness that I thought them too good not to share. Life will never be perfect this side of heaven but God's grace and love for us is never-ending and we can trust in that.

(Thank you to my lovely friend Sara at Like a Fox Photography for joining us and capturing these special images.)

Sunday, July 6, 2014

hello, des moines!

I had to head downtown for some shots for a little project and I drug my boys along. Since I was taking my camera anyway, I finally took some shots of my boys. Unfortunately, B prefers my cell phone camera. To see him really ham it up, check him out on instagram. :) 

Don't mind the shorts change on B (we thought he peed his pants in the car; as it turns out he actually just poured all his water bottle into his lap and whined about being thirsty until we made it to our next stop). (Also, somewhat unrelated but completely mortifying..... we stopped for a sandwich while on our little adventure. When I was walking in I noticed a lady sitting outside on the curb with several (not shopping) bags of 'stuff.' I said, 'are you hungry ma'am? would you like to grab a sandwich with us?' to which HE responded, 'I'm waiting for my wife.' I'm not sure what was more mortifying.... thinking he was homeless or thinking he was a she. You can officially be embarrassed to be seen in public with me now. I was (am) completely mortified over the deal and probably wont ever offer to help another stranger again. Rusty on the other hand got a great laugh out of the deal.) (In my defense... who sits outside to wait when it's 100+ degrees out?!?) Oy. 

Monday, June 30, 2014

Beck's Big Boy Room

Once upon a time there was a little boy. He decided he wasn't real crazy about his crib anymore and that boycotting naps was awesome. His mommy and daddy, deliriously tired from the no sleep, decided it'd be a great time to transition him to the big boy bed. The original plan* was to use the crib conversion kit to switch his crib into a toddler bed and to leave mostly everything else in his not so babyish nursery the same.

If you know me in real life, feel free to start laughing now.

Because you know that's not how it went down.

I took these pictures of B and knew I wanted to hang them in his room somehow. Then I had this faux brick walling sitting around that's supposed to go in the studio and craft room... it hasn't made it that far yet so I stole a smidge and we (I mean, R), hung it up in B's room. Once those two elements were in the trim totally had to go so we went with a dark grey (hopefully to last him till he moves out?) and took down all the existing artwork. (It worked out great cause I used it all in other areas of our house. Hello cute mantel.) We hung up a huge wall map (though I really want a 'physical style' one instead... anyone have one laying around?!). And he got his globe back in his room. It was then we realized we kind of had a travel(ish) meets history classroom theme going on. We ditched the idea of hanging the flag above his bed. R spent an entire day building a pallet bed before I realized there was not enough sanding on the world that would make a pallet bed smooth enough for a toddler and I made an impulse purchase of a twin on amazon. (I don't feel too bad about it, it's the first piece of furniture we've bought for B and only the 4th piece of furniture we've purchased ourselves. Ever.) The bed made me realize how much floor space his dresser takes up. We would love to reuse the dresser in a nursery again someday so we went ahead and purchased a new chest of drawers instead (5th piece of furniture now) and that freed up some floor space. Without the navy of the dresser, we needed to tie in the navy in the pouf so we spray painted the bench daddy made and the 'book shelves' (ikea spice racks) on the walls. I still wasn't satisfied so we swapped out the old ikea curtains for new ikea curtains and called it good. Until I realized the space above his bed was still a blank canvas. I'm super weird about hanging anything heavy or glass above the bed (because what if there's an earthquake?!) (just kidding), so we stuck vintage postcards of all the places he's visited there instead. Full disclosure: he only visited Jamaica in utero and Detroit and Denver were both just airport stops. But he's two and needed a little help filling up wall space so we are totally counting them. (We're also hoping to add a few new postcards to the wall later this summer!) With that, B picked out some finishing accessories. He added in some favorite toys (the van was his first 'souvenir' purchase picked out by himself- he bought it at the Denver airport). He even picked out the Pepsi crate for his nightstand (oh yeah- another impulse furniture buy... that's 6). The lamp was a 1st birthday gift from his Uncle Doyle (I think the box said 'as seen on tv'), the quilt made my some of his great grandparents before he was born, and all the other details are just random finds from around the house. Including my big white comforter he likes to drag in to his room for nap time that I was trying to shoot around to get these shots. :)

I'm contemplating putting another one of his 'book shelves' near the pouf to make a mini reading nook? And adding a rug like this to the space. And switching out the maps. And hanging the airplane from the mobile hook. And of course adding more postcards. But otherwise, we're doneso. Finally. Also, I realize it seems like we did a ton more than just switch out the bed but at least we didn't paint. You're welcome, hunny. ;)


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