I have a little feature I do on my blog every once in a while called Evidence They Where Here. It's where I take notice of all the cute little evidence around my house that my children are here. They leave evidence of their presence all over my world. I don't focus on the messes they make, but rather the sweet little things that make them who they are. These are the things I would miss if they weren't around.

From the desk I am sitting at now, I can glance down and see a pile of my daughter's favorite toys, Shopkins, haphazardly spread across the floor. And I can see the castle made out of Magna-tiles that my son built so carefully last night. I can see my daughter's little denim flats that she kicked off in a hurry when she burst in the door yesterday after school exclaiming "Mommy I neeeeeed a snack!" And does anyone else allow piles of random items to pile up on your stairs? I walk up those stairs a hundred times a day, but for some reason I fail to pick up a few of those items each time I walk up. Currently I see a polka dot headband, several library books that are due back tomorrow, the kids favorite body wash that I bought for them at the store yesterday, and a pile of nerf gun bullets. All evidence of life humming along. Bits and bobs of an active, happy little home. And I am overcome with gratefulness.

I love doing this exercise. Because instead of seeing the piles of kid stuff as extra work for me to constantly clean up, it helps me to see them as a beautiful testimony that two very active kiddos live here. And I wouldn't want to live without them! I'll take their messes, their laundry, the endless number of papers that come home from school. I'll take it all with a smile on my face. Because they are making their mark on this world. I want them to know that I see them. They matter to me. They are cherished. They make my life a million times better. And this is their home. I want them to feel sanctuary here, where they can spread out the toys and kick off their shoes (literally).

I recently lost my father rather unexpectedly. And I can't tell you how comforting it was to see all the evidence he left behind in his home. Evidence of his presence. Of his character. Of his life. I don't ever want to take the lives of the people I love for granted. I don't want to miss the signs of life all around me.

Take notice of the evidence, mamas.

One day soon, we'll be walking through the house and see stacks of college applications, and newly issued driver’s licenses, and giant smelly gym shoes. And we'll miss the Shopkins! We'll miss the tiny little shoes, and onesies, and the lego messes! Let's cherish each and every stage of life. Let's notice the details and throw our arms around them every chance we get.

If you happen to notice any special evidence this week and want to share it on Instagram, feel free to use the hashtag #evidencetheywerehere and tag me, @sheiswoven, too! I would love to see the special little ways your babies are leaving their mark. This can be serious or silly! It's fun to document it all.


Bri Carlisle is a wife, mom, graphic designer and hobbyist photographer. She loves documenting her family and faith via pretty pictures and sentimental words over at her personal blog, Woven. You can also find her on instagram at @sheiswoven.