Psalm 127:3-5

Behold children are a gift of the LORD,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a mighty warrior, so are the children of one's youth.
How blessed are those whose quiver is full of them

Monday, July 29, 2013

Just "belaxin"

I love this girl!!! Last week while we were waiting for Ben to get done with Speech we went down the street to Starbucks to pick up a few goodies. While we were in the drive-thru I hear "mom look at me".... When I turn around she's in this position and says "this is the life, calm and belaxin". (Relaxing)

Oh my word! This girl cracks me up and steals my heart every day! 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

One of the big kids

This girl is working overtime to become one of the big kids. It makes me smile when I watch her copy the things they do but as always you just look up and realize the time is speeding by faster than you can blink your eyes. These are the happiest days of our lives so far! Joy!!

Silly faces...

Drawing just like she sees her big sisters do it....

Reading just like she sees her big sisters... Look at that sweet belly!

Morning face! 

It's jelly time again

This weekend we picked the grapes from the vines on our street and prepared and froze the juice. Now, when we find the time, we will make our family favorite grape jelly!! Love this time of our summer.


Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Bright Lights

Anna attended a girls conference for young girls ages 8-12 this week. It is a Christian group that puts it on and a very conservative one at that. Most of the girls and mothers wore skirts and some even covered their heads. They were probably 98% homeschooled and from families of at least three or more children but most were from families driving big white vans... You get the picture! :)

Anyway, while I don't necessarily feel like I "fit in" with this crowd in the way I look or in some of the ways we live... I don't grind my own wheat or anything... I still felt very blessed for Anna to sit among other girls who share her same values and whose families are as "different" as hers... Well in most cases these girls families are way "different", at least as far as modern culture is concerned.... I mean I don't make all our own clothes that consist of Laura Ingalls type garb. Haha! Seriously though, there were a few of those families there. 

All in all though Anna had a blast. She jumped right in with her small group and enjoyed discussing, singing, crafts and engaging the other girls. Anna is painfully shy so this was a stretch for her. Had Serene been there she would have made friends with the whole group in minutes. That is not Anna's style. Anna is like me, very slow to warm up but once she has her "footing" she makes few yet deep friendships. 

Some of the topics the girls heard speakers talk about were:

Making your brothers and sisters your best friends. 

How to cultivate a servants heart towards your siblings instead of always putting yourself first.

Not submitting to cultural norms but being the individual you were meant to be 

Being a Bright Light in a dark world


She bravely participated in small group discussion and listened intently in the larger group meeting. I was so proud of her and loved hearing her talk and talk on the way home regarding all the different things she learned and talked about. 

We can't wait for next year. Maybe we'll drive a big white van or take some homemade whole wheat bread.... Haha!!!

Anna's small group

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Happy birthday to our pioneer man

This guy... Wow!! He is one serious dude. This year has really brought out the mountain man in our youngest son. This guy loves fishing, catching insects and frogs and being in the dirt.... Just to name a few of his favorites. He has become a frog hunting expert and can get those things fast as a flash regardless of size. I detest insects, frogs, bugs... Etc. so I just try and act excited for him but stand a good foot away when he brings me his latest find. :)

Rivers at 3:

He loves spider man

He does not have time for TV shows

He unlike all 4 other children does NOT have a sweet tooth 

He would play outside 24 hours a day if I let him

He LOVES golf

He adores his dad and would like to be with him non stop

He is beginning to like his brother

He absolutely adores his baby sister and is always getting her a drink or a snack or a toy. Such a huge difference from last year when he just ignored her.

He is very quiet and contemplative but can be the loudest if he needs attention. 

He gets very excited about daily life and it does my heart so much good to see his zeal for what is mostly just the mundane. He sees a tree and says "(gasp) look at dat tree!!(another gasp)"... Wonder and excitement are always on his face!!

He gives the best best best hugs and kisses and says "I lub you momma".... 

I "lub" you to my sweet Rivers J !!!!

Super "Ribers"
His birthday balloon!
Sleeping with his new golf balls (don't worry, I took the balls and plastic bag away the minute he fell asleep)
Chillin' on the golf cart at Uncle Kens!!
That's what 4 years does...


For a very long time I've thought it would be so wonderful to have a beautiful oil painting of my children. I love photos but there is something so incredible about faces captured on canvas in oil. Well as always, my amazing husband knew just what I wanted and commissioned this unbelievable painting of my very favorite photograph of our children. I love this painting for obvious reasons... Like my five gorgeous children in it but I also love how it captures the beauty of the pond, the white fence and the way the fall colors were just showing themselves in the hints of yellows among the greens! I'm overwhelmed at this stunning painting every time I look at it! Love! 

Two boys and a birthday

Fireworks with his best friends!

Riding the go-kart with his big cousin Mack!

Hiding under his bed during nap time!

Being funny in Daddy's glasses!

Fell asleep during movie night..

He fell asleep while I was reading to him!! 
I don't care how many years go by, when June 19 rolls around, we will always say "wow, can you believe Ben was born on Jimmy's birthday?". It's so crazy and amazing and fun that these two guys share a birthday. They are so alike in so many ways and then to share a day as personal as your birthday makes it all the better! I love these two guys and can't e believe how very much our Ben has come into his own this year. His talking is now right on par with children his own age and wow does he have some of the most wonderful things to say. 

Bens favorite things at 4 and some interesting facts:

Wearing his "work clothes" (suit and tie)

Wearing his cowboy stuff

Playing in his room with his baseball cards (Jimmy's old ones)

Being with his "best friends" (Anna, Serene and Rivers). He says Patience isn't old enough to be a friend yet but she can be when she's old enough. :)

Swinging on his swing set. He goes out and swings for 10 or 15 minutes at a time just singing and thinking. 

He loves music and anything with a beat gets him dancing as soon as he hears it. 

He loves to help clean up and organize but isn't always willing to do it when I ask... He likes for it to be his idea. :)

He knows what he wants and can rarely be convinced otherwise.

He has a heart for others and is very sensitive to their needs and hurts.

He is a deep deep thinker.

He absolutely adores his baby sister and beams with joy when she runs up and hugs him. (She is such a hugger... Heart melt!!!)

He loves to get the approval of his big sisters and is so proud when thy are proud of him! 

He told us just this weekend... "I have to go with Rivers, I have to protect him, I his big brother"

I cannot even express how much I adore this little guy. He is such a joy and asset to our home. Happy (belated) 4th birthday Ben! 

Happy Birthday Daddy too!!!

Being silly on a Saturday while Daddy and sister slept behind him!!