Thursday, December 9, 2010

Family Pictures

Fun photo session with The Still Picture Company! :)

Monday, November 22, 2010

Super awesome deal!

Use the code above to get 20% off your order at
They have Robees on sale plus free shipping, so you can score some super cute baby shoes for under $10.00! That is more than half off! Use the code that is displayed in the box for your discount!  They have a fairly large selection of boy and girl shoes that are on sale. Not just the super cute dump truck ones above. :) Happy shopping!
Ordered mine yesterday Morning Monday November 22nd, they arrived on my door step this morning, Tuesday November 23rd! Love it!!!!
Just checked the site again and prices are back up to normal. :(  Hope some of you jumped on the deal when it was still going!
You can still use the code to receive 20% off anything you order on that site. I am sure you can still find a great deal on something you need!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Lunch, recess and other fun stuff...

Here are a few recent shots of normal life around here. Lots of eating and bouncing off the walls, trampoline, couches or whatever else they may find that has the ability to launch them into the air. :) 
These four silly kids keep me busy and smiling. I like them and am thankful for them. 

Morning much fun!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

To My Love

I think this song says so much. Rest and let the words penetrate you heart, mind and soul. I love you Steven.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Technology of the future.

Calvin is sitting on the couch.....asking my I pod time I am sure....but not yet... :)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Calvin makes me laugh.

The other evening while our family was having our evening family devotions the kids asked if they could start off by singing the books of the bible song. We think it is adorable when they sing this all together, and even getting through this song normally without confusion is a crack up!
On this particular evening, Sydney's voice had died off right at Song- of- Sol-o-men. Calvin went on with
Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel.....then paused, looked at us with one eyebrow up and his head cocked a bit and said with total seriousness the name of the book in the bible that he assumed had to be next...Travis?
So, most of you will get why this is so funny, but for those of you who don't, lots of our friends choose names for their children from the bible or from the books of the bible. Most of these names, with the exception of Lamentations (so far... just kidding!) he knows as friends, so the logical name next in line was of course Travis, not Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah. Jonah, Micah, Na-hum, Habakakuk, Zephani-ah. Haggai, Zechariah, and the last book Malachi!
Anyway, I'm sure had we not all stopped to giggle he would have gone on with Christian, Caleb, Luke, Jake, Elijah, Augustine!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Beach day

We love the beach. I can't believe that last week was the first time we went all summer! We will being going more soon, as the summer comes to an end.
The summer flew by. I can't believe that school is starting up already. I don't know how that happened. thankfully we love the beach in the fall. The water is warm, everyone else is at work or school and we get a beautiful warm sandy beach all to ourselves. We look forward to the fall all year. The whole summer Sydney has been reminding me of how she is ready for fall and is thrilled that September is here.  
Sydney will be starting 2nd grade and Calvin, although still not old enough to be in Kindergarten officially, will be starting up a kindergarten like school year. We will see how that goes!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Check out GROUPON

This is a newer coupon site called Groupon. They have some deeply discounted prices on a range of items. It's kinda one of those sites you check out and if they have something you need you are scoring a great deal. If you don't need it and are still purchasing it then even if it is deeply discounted, it is still a waste of money.

Anyway, check it out and sign up. It is super quick and easy. If you sign up through this link then I will earn 10 groupon dollars. ( I actually don't even know what that means yet!) If you sign up then you can refer your friends and earn 10 groupon dollars too! If anyone signs up through me I will tell you if the groupon dollars do anything wonderful or not. Check it out. See what kind of special savings you can find!

Water Play

This little one is so much fun. He is very happy and is so easy to care for. He loves his big sisters and big brother and they adore him too!

It has been great having a pool this summer. Sydney and Calvin are excellent swimmers now that they have been able to practice all summer long. Calvin even taught himself to dive and is pretty good at it. I keep trying to convince him to try a back dive but he's not quite ready yet. He just likes to tell me to try one then laugh at how silly I look attempting to hurl myself backwards and somewhat resemble the back diving of my youth! Yes I said youth, back dives don't come easy as the years go by!

Sydney loves jumping in too but doesn't dare try anything fancy. She likes cannon balls just fine.
I don't know how this picture turned out this way but it looks kinda neat.  Anyway, Jaclynn loves the pool too and will often be heard singing "Come on get on the board with the Lord and let's ride! Wiping out with a crash! In the tube what a splash! I'm on the board with the Lord, living to do God's will!" You know, the Jana Alyra song. It's hysterical. I think she sings it while she swims as part of her safety net. When she first started getting in the pool this summer she would slowly let go of me then swim around saying "I not scared, I not scared, I not scared!" And say it the whole time she swam! Now, it's the song.   It is pretty cute to watch. She is a fun little two year old.
He makes me smile so much! He will be eight months in just a couple of days. I love this age, he is so sweet and cute! He's almost crawling.He makes it from one end of the room to the other but not by official crawling yet. I think we will see the real thing soon.

Thats it for now. More to come soon.

Friday, August 27, 2010

I have been going back and forth about what to post next. I have summer updates and pictures of the kids and Steven's 30th birthday to write about. I knew I couldn't post anything else about the summer though until I posted about our loss. Sadly, at almost 15 weeks pregnant, we lost our baby.

Honestly, it was devastating. But God, in His goodness and mercy toward me and my family has held us up through it all. We have been showered with love from friends and family and our church. We had lots of meals and help with the kids and the house. We also enjoyed visitors just stopping by to visit with us and keep us going. It has been so much easier to handle with all of the support around us and we are very grateful.

We don't know why God chose to give us the special blessing of a baby and then take it away. We do know that "...for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose." Romans 8:28 Thankfully, this is where we rest. We have full confidence in the plans He has made for us and are looking to the future with hope and excitement for what comes our way. Good or bad. We want what is His will. That doesn't mean it is easy to accept the hard stuff. Just makes it a little more bearable.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Growing our family.

I recently had a conversation with a good friend about transitioning from one to two children then two to three and so on. After I hung up the phone it really had me thinking about all the ideas and expectations I had and some of the harsh realities too once thrust into my new role as mom of many. Now by no means am I claiming to be any form of an expert. But simply one who has walked, run and been dragged down the road of motherhood. My mind couldn't stop reeling through memories of years passed so I thought I would write some things down. Not only to preserve the memories I have of my years as a mom of many little ones but also for reference for friends and my own dear children when they hit young motherhood.

Something I learned quickly after having my first was to never say never. I am sure all of you who have at least one can remember some things you swore you would never do. And now are confidently and happily allowing those parenting "no-no's" today! I garantee that all of you who say no that won't be me will cave at some point. We all have our own strongholds that will likely someday have to succumb to because our baby just doesn't work that way. Maybe the first one did but the second one sure won't!

I remember being terrified about going from one to two.  I completely lacked confidence in myself. I was sure I would never be able to grocery shop or go to the doctors or park alone! I think that was a pivitol point for me as an adult and mother. I really grew spiritually during this time too because of my desperate need for direction and sleep! Thankfully I fell hard onto my knees in prayer, because that was the only way I was going to survive. God has always provided abundently and this time there was no doubt about it. Once Calvin was around six months old I remember feeling a sense of relief. All my fears of what to do when in public with two small children had subsided and it gave me real freedom. How awful to look back now and see how fear controlled my life. I was so foolish. But through all that I learned so much about myself and who God is. He sustained me through two sleepless years ( really, if you know me well you know what I am talking about :) ) he built my confidence and gave me deep desires for service to my family and others and a clear understanding of self sacrifice. Little did I know the self sacrifice I knew then was nothing compared to what I would experience once I transitioned from two to three!

Going from two to three wasn't scary at all. I remember thinking what is one more? Give me two or three more, I can handle it! This actually did turn out to be true. It wasn't hard adding more little ones because I had already been doing everything that pertains to little ones for 4 1/2 years. Mostly because I was already at home, already not sleeping, and already devoting my life to my family. The one thing that was very different though was the good old "me time".  I HATE that phrase. It irritates me. Once I had three children the "me time" had been dissolved. There was no longer time for watching a show during nap time or napping myself. Funny that my "me time" was rotting my brain with TV or taking a nap. Pathetic I know. I guess this is when it became harder to sit down and get through books quickly too. So, then it wasn't all useless, I was reading too! Anyway, laundry and dishes seemed to triple. Any extra time I had was devoted to working on something in my home. Now for some this may seem like a miserable life but it wasn't. It was amazingly eye opening. First of all it helped me to really dig deep and examine priorities. At the point of two children only I actually still had a lot of flexibility and cushion when it came to household chores and routine. It was easy to skip things because I wasn't too outnumbered yet. It worked for our family. I see it working for lots of families in this situation. So, now with three I got thrust into a major change in thinking. I found myself focussed so much more outside of myself and into the world around me.  Letting go of a lot of laziness once having a third gave me huge amounts of time for working around the house with the kids and cooking/baking with the kids. Now don't be mislead here. I don't think I have had all my laundry done and put away since sometime in 2006. I still have a very messy house at times. But, I really realized that I was not using my time as wisely as I should. And I was convicted about what time I was rising in the morning. "... She rises while it is yet night and prepares food for her household and a portion for her maidens... her lamp does not go out at night..." This is an excerpt from Proverbs 31 paraphrased sort of.  I read and re- read this passage. I kept trying to find the part that said, except when she has a newborn, or not during the first trimester, or only if all is well and perfect in her life. I couldn't find those parts. The conviction grew. This was life changing. It stretched and grew me in good ways. This was also the time that I was convicted about my at home job. It occupied a lot of my time. I could no longer say it worked for our family to have me working from home. I prayed for a way out.

Thankfully my prayers were answered in ways one would never dream. I quit, we moved and I had my fourth. All in that order. It was an enormous weight off my shoulders to not be responsible for someone else's business. And it was a major stress relief to know that my concern and care was all for my family and not about job performance and renter satisfaction. Moving into a larger home was sort of an experiment. I had my theories that I preached to Steven on a regular basis about how it would be easier to clean a larger home and not so easy to dirty it up because of all the space. I would say my theories were right, with some tweaking. Schedule and routine became huge must haves. Steven got me a blackberry four days after I had Gregory and it has been an enormous aid in my quest to figure out motherhood with four. It has this great calendar feature that will pop up reminders for me for anything from vacuuming the downstairs to bible study on Wednesdays. It keeps me from having to remember everything that needs to be done. Technology is wonderful. My growth as a momma with four has allowed me to open up my home often for guests or for events like our home group. I love that! My family loves visitors so why not get my act together so people can visit? Another big part of this joy of sharing our home with others is to not be worried about what it looks like. Now, I am saying that we all have more time than we realize and we can stretch ourselves to accomplish more. But, there are times that it's just not happening, like when you are trying to let your kids play and swim outside and you are throwing up in the bushes next to them. Days like these I don't skip back inside and conquer the breakfast and lunch dishes. They sit there til the next day I feel well enough. And that is ok. I have to still be ok with everyone seeing what's real. Some days it actually is a clean house with a clean toilet and clean counters. Other days its not. I figure, if any one likes me because my house is clean or likes me because my house is never clean then they've got some issues. Not me and my sometimes clean or sometimes chaotic house!

Now I am well on my way to five. Ahh! I am still trying to master four! I have  seven and a half months to go to figure it out. I keep visualizing myself in different situations. Like bed time and dinner time. Two nights a week I am on my own for bed time. And five times a week I am on my own for dinner time. Oh yeah, and baths. I just figured out a reasonable bath schedule for the four! I've really got to get creative with five! I don't know why the whole bath routine plagues me, but it does! Kitchen sinks are quick and easy for little ones. Think I could do two little ones at the same time in there? I will try and let you know! So much to think about and figure out. I admire those who have raised theirs up and have grown marvelous, loving, god honoring men and women. What a job. The hardest I know. Done well and right and without giving up or giving in I think we can make a difference in this world. Our lives as mothers right now is about the future and the legacy we have built. Our blood, sweat and tears are molding future generations. That reality gives me chills and forces me to constantly be thinking about my choices and motives as a wife, mom, friend, daughter, sister, woman and christian.

Just something to think about.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

We have news!!!!

So, it looks like the rest of this year will be EXACTLY the same as last years. Minus the big move. Oh, and we are not getting two more dogs. So, not exactly the same, but close. So those are two of our top  three events of last year. The third being me pregnant with our fourth child. This summer.......... our fifth! Ahhhhh! I know! We are VERY excited to announce that baby #5 is due the end of January 2011! Not exactly planned but totally and completely welcomed! So, another lazy summer, attempting to avoid total burn out from the first trimester. That's our big news for now. Go ahead and pick your jaw back up from off the floor!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Recycling Reformation

Check out Sydney's site. There is a new post.

It has been far too long.

I took an un-intentional

 fast from blogging, but now have found my self back here. So much to catch up on and write about I don't know where to begin. For now I will post some cute happenings around here then catch up on other stuff later.
The kids and dogs often congregate under the school room table. They pile in together for a sort of "nap time". Of course no kids actually sleep. But, surprisingly the dogs do!

Our sweet little guy is trying his first veggies and cereal! It is fun and the kids love to help! Now, clean up after two very eager little girls and an unexperienced 5 month old eater is another story!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Finishing touches.

We moved seven months ago. The time has flown by. I can't believe it has been that long. When we first moved in I was two and a half months away from having Gregory and knew I had to work quickly to get things set up before he was born. Especially because I was having a home birth I knew it was going to drive me nuts to be in the midst of unpacked boxes and chaos! For the most part I was able to set the majority of the house up. The bedrooms were another story though. After moving things around many times trying to find the best way to fit in furniture and give the kids the most play room, I think I am finally done. I wish I would have taken before photos but oh well. I still have a few ideas for decorations in the girls room but that will have to come from future garage sale finds. Calvin's room has a couple of sports pictures that need to be hung and Gregory's crib still needs to make it in there. All in all, the rooms look done. They have been organized and decorated and it feels good to be done! Next I need to start in on our bedroom. I have grand plans to paint all of the furniture and teach myself to reupholster! Hopefully that doesn't take me another seven months!

Almost everything in both the boys room and girls room was free stuff passed a long or found. I purchased a couple little things from Target for a few bucks each like the shelf, trash can and sports pictures for the boys room. All of the girls room furniture was free too, by way of hand me downs or pulling over on the side of the road when I saw a free sign and what not. It was fun to pull it all together. I am excited to go out and see what else I can find to pull of the finishing touches in the girls room. It is very feminine and soft so I hope to find other things that compliment that. Which leads me to garage sales. I love them! I figure I will be able to find what I need to finish all of the bedrooms if I am patient enough.  
 While out at garage sales recently, I found something that I have been waiting almost SEVEN years for! And, I actually found two of them! I love how adorable and functional the Petunia Pickle Bottom diaper bags are. I have admired them from afar for so long. I could never bring my self to buy one as they are priced at upwards of $160.00!!! But, I happened upon one for $25.00 in excellent condition! I couldn't pass it up! Then, a couple of weeks later much to my total shock, I found another one in excellent condition for only $10.00!!! My friend Jess had asked me to keep my eyes out for one for her on the off chance that I would spot one again. I couldn't believe that I did! My point in telling you all of this is simply that you should check garage sales for everything! I bet you would be shocked at what you could find. I love going to the neighborhoods where houses are a bit pricier than usual. It seems you tend to find really great stuff at a cheap price when the houses are in the over a million range. Seems silly I know, but it's true!