Saturday, December 31, 2011

A Mama and Her Girls

A daughter is a little girl who grows up to be a friend. - author unknown

Mothers hold their children's hands for a short while, but their hearts forever - author unknown
A daughter is a day brightener and a heart warmer. - author unknown

Thank you Katie Troup for capturing me and my sweet girls! More grateful everyday that God saw fit to entrust me with two little girls! They are such fun! And give the most amazing hugs and snuggles! I would know since a little girl makes her way to our bed nearly every night to snuggle with her mama! And I am suddenly wanting to freeze time as I realize Heidi is closing in rapidly on her 3rd birthday! These days are fleeting and oh so fun! The girls have been in their bathing suits all day today as well as floaties, goggles and anything related to swimming! Messes galore but so are the giggles! Looking forward with anticipation to what we will encounter and discover over this next year!
*all the updated and beautiful pictures are the creative handiwork of Katie Troup! Thank you Katie!!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

The After Christmas Post

While most people in the blogosphere have spent this week writing eloquent and beautiful renditions of their picture perfect Christmas I have been trying to recover. Pathetic, right? I look forward to Christmas every year with so much anticipation and then the week following all the festivities I am tired. And I enter into a recovery mode. I hunker down, try to get my house back in order and attempt to enjoy every minute with the kids while they are on break. Key word is attempt! You would think by now I would be able to distinguish reality from unrealistic fancy notions. Kids are tired, out of sorts, trying to navigate hours of free time and it doesn't always go as well as I conjure up in my head. In fact, it rarely goes as I have planned. Someone whack me over the head already so I get it once and for all!
Once again I was amazed by how excited our kids were for each other as they opened gifts. I mean how many 8 year old boys are this thrilled when their sister opens up nail polish? And Ellen, this nail polish has been a huge hit! Good thinking!!
For the record Heidi had jammie pants on when we ventured downstairs to open gifts. I grabbed the camera, turned around and she already had shed her pants. She claimed she spilled some soda on her pants. Turns out she was right. How exactly did she get soda to drink at 7:30 in the morning? Oh yeah......her mother may or may not have put mini soda cans in all her children's stockings. You may go ahead and have my head checked to see if I am ok.
A boy and his football! Happy times!
A boy and his playmobil set. Happy child!
Another boy and his lego set. Another happy child!
A girl who insisted on wearing her hair unfettered, braided or controlled! Kind of mirrors her personality at times!
Overall we had a wonderful time! This week has been a little questionable but we have had some fun moments. I really need to learn that a large part of family life is squabbles and kerfuffles. But in all of it we are learning. At least I am.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Paying Tribute

Yesterday I sat in a funeral service. The clouds hung low and seemed to weep along with the family and friends. Death is unavoidable yet seldom welcomed. Saying good-bye to a loved one seems to tear a piece of you away and get tucked into the ground along with their earthly body. Finding a new normal can seem impossible in the midst of such a gaping loss. My heart aches for my uncle!

The service was to pay tribute to my aunt. A wife, mother and friend of many. In these later years of her life her independence was robbed as her body was wracked by a debilitating muscular disease. The quick wit was harder to decipher yet was still at the ready. I spent many, many hours in their home as a child and this week the memories came in waves. Hours spent in a hammock on their porch, traipsing around their yard and woods, ice-skating on their pond, giggles as we ran through the house and meals at their table. Our imaginations ran wild as they do when you are a carefree child.

While I want to pay tribute to her life and how she lived to serve others my mind has strayed more often to my uncle. Yesterday as I spoke briefly with him one could not deny his undying affection for his wife. His eyes hardly left her face as he spoke with me. His hand resting gently on the blanket covering the shell of her body. A man who desperately is missing his beloved. And these years have not been easy for him. Retiring from his pediatric practice to become her primary care giver. He cared for her tirelessly. I am sure there were times he wished things were different. Can you really blame him? I get grumpy some days taking care of my children and they are fairly independent. Yet he cared for her like he promised 49 years ago. In sickness and in health. We let these words roll off our tongues so carelessly in our youth because really we are invincible. We never dream that for years we may have to care for them as their body wastes away.

As someone thanked him towards the end of the service for his devotion to her and his testimony of loving her I felt the hot tears finally spill from my eyes. Except they were tears of anger. The emotion came from nowhere and I felt somewhat blindsided. I muttered to Mark, "If only my father would have had half that devotion for my mom!" It has been nearly 11 years now of processing the anger and disappointment. And while most of the time you just accept things yesterday I felt the pangs again. Some wounds seem to carry only scabs and seem to have a hard time turning into a scar. Scars don't hurt when they are poked and prodded but scabs can tear and bleed again. My heart felt some tugging and I think a small section oozed yesterday.

Today I heard that my father verbally admitted to my uncle sometime over the past few days that he in fact does have some regret for how his life has played out. To which my uncle quickly responded, "I don't!" So grateful to my uncle that he has given of himself and has been spent on behalf of others and he doesn't regret it!

So, what I have been mulling over today is this: I want to live my life so at the end I can confidently proclaim that I have no regrets! I want to live and be spent so that I am emptied out at the end of my life. Poured out for others. Because isn't that the beauty of this Christmas season? The ultimate gift given for us, poured out for us so that we may live and in turn be poured out as well? At this point in my life most of my being spent and poured out is for my husband and children. May I embrace it with a sense of gratitude and grace! I don't want to pine away and wish for what could have been so that I miss the beauty of right now! May God richly bless you all this Christmas! Embrace these moments so that we too can state, "I have no regrets!"

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


A little over seven months ago I received a phone call from my friend asking me if I remembered a certain young lady that I had met only a time or two. I remembered her immediately. Turns out this young lady was pregnant, due in a few weeks and looking for a family to adopt her baby. Our name had come up and she wondered if we would be interested. I was confused as to why our first impulse was to say no but it became clear over time. One of my biggest hesitations at the time was there was too much familiarity between the birth mom and our family. Plus, the timing felt all wrong for us.

Within a few days as we prayed and kept talking we suddenly remembered a contact we had through my cousin. In the spring of 2010 my cousin contacted me and asked if good friends of theirs could possibly be in touch with us to talk about adoption. They were pursuing an Ethiopian at the time and we had many emails back and forth during those months. Fast forward to the spring of 2011 and there was a slowdown in Ethiopia. This couple felt led to withdraw from Ethiopia and pursue fostering to adopt. We "talked" via email a few times during this tumultuous time.

Now here we were in early May and suddenly I remembered this dear family - waiting and ready at a moments notice for the placement of a baby. I contacted them and told them of the situation asking if they would be interested in meeting the birth mom. Long story short we were the connecting piece! We were not supposed to be the parents and family for this dear little girl! We were just instrumental in helping to connect the pieces.

Why do I share all this with you today? Well, this morning Eden and I found ourselves at the courthouse to witness the finalization of this precious child's adoption! They were surrounded by friends and family and it was awesome! At one point there were 12 children present and 6 of them were adopted! It was simply amazing! And while I would love to show you pictures and divulge the God orchestrated details I cannot. Just trust me when I say that it was wonderful being there to witness the final legal step!

Congratulations to you dear family! One little girl received her new name today and we are thanking God for preserving her life! Give a shout out for the miracle and the gift of adoption today!!!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

Last night the kids and I made cut-out sandtart cookies for fun. Half-way through I questioned how I could have thought this would be very fun. There was a large boy sitting in the middle of the kitchen table (feet almost touching the cookies), little ones licking their fingers to dip into the colored sugar we were going to be using to decorate the cookies, fighting over who got to decorate how many cookies and the counting police were on patrol letting me know exactly how many cookies someone else decorated. Mark walked into the kitchen and said, "Wow! Looks fun!" I stopped and started telling him how much more fun it was making Christmas cookies when I was a child. And then I had to wonder how fun it was for my mom? The mess, the fighting, the unsolicited "help", etc. Confession time: I was grumpy by the time we were done. Sad but true. Part of the problem was we were doing this is at the time of the day when I am most depleted (after 7:00) and in my mind it was going to be outrageously fun! I forgot about the frustrating parts of helping lots of little ones. They are asking to do gingerbread houses next. Help!!

Every year I am determined to be finished with all my Christmas shopping by the time Thanksgiving rolls around. I have found that people become more rude the closer you get to Christmas. The lines get long, people forget their manners and it really puts damper on the giving atmosphere that should be present at Christmas. I almost met my goal this year of being done a month early. I would rather spend the month of December doing advent activities with the kids and spending evenings making memories that will last a lifetime. Like cookie making catastrophes!!

I struggle every year with the massive consumerism. Yet, I still buy things. Every year. There is something beautiful about giving. Mark and I try really hard to keep things simple with our kids and they are always extremely grateful. Even though their friends are getting all sorts of high-tech, high price electronic gadgets. But I just recently gleaned something from a friend. A sort of rules, per say, when it comes to Christmas. It resonated with both Mark and I and will probably become our "Christmas rules" too. (Thanks Katie) They are as follows:

1. One thing you want.
2. One thing you need.
3. One thing you wear.
4. One thing you read.

Brilliant, eh? I think it is genius! When it comes to giving gifts to people other than our children we try to think beyond the box. How about giving money to a grant for a child waiting on Reeces Rainbow? How about giving to World Vision or Compassion in honor of someone? Or how about buying a gift from Ten Thousand Villages? What about buying some coffee for the coffee lover in your life from Saints Coffee? Or buying apparel, jewelry on Etsy from someone who is adopting a child? It makes complete sense to me to buy gifts that benefit artisans in other places as well as blessing the person receiving the gift from you. Last year Mark's family did a chinese auction type gift exchange and all the gifts had to benefit someone else. It was absolutely delightful watching every gift being opened and finding out what had been given. Goats, bikes, latrines, clean water.....all given to help someone else! I urge you to try it out if family and friends are willing to try something new! So fun!

On another note all together........I am going to be an aunt again!! Tomorrow my brother, his wife and two children leave for Ethiopia to meet their two newest additions! I am about bursting at the seams with excitement for them! Would you purpose to pray specifically for them over the next 2 weeks? I will give brief updates if possible all the while knowing this is their story and not mine to share. But I know they welcome and cherish the support and prayer of loved ones!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Little Girls

Impromptu dress up day at our house today! The girls got all decked out and had themselves a swell time! Getting lost in their imaginations is the best kind of play!

And who says you can't wear a skirt as a tube top? Heidi wore it proudly not caring about fashion! And I think she looks sweet if I do say so myself.

Little girls love their babies!! And my two girls are no exception. They finally got to hold and love their brand new cousin Catherine yesterday and were thrilled to pieces. Especially Eden! Who is still hoping and praying for a little brown baby! Look at her eyes and tender smile! She was pretty mesmerized especially every time Catherine's hat fell off and she was able to touch her hair.

And then it was Heidi's turn. Trowing up the quick, "Lord have mercy" I placed Catherine in Heidi's arms. I wasn't sure what to expect.

I certainly was in shock when I captured her first genuine smile with the camera!! Finally!! Look at how happy she was to hold the baby! So thankful God saw fit to bless me with some girls in addition to my handsome boys!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The View From Here

Blaze orange and frenzied excitement! Coupled with disappointment at the non-sighting of any buck to place within the cross hairs.

Game playing!

And more game playing! Probably one of my favorite things about the shorter days! We are forced to slow down and play games.

Just some leisurely stretching before sitting up to eat dinner! Not really sure how she is so flexible!

The countdown to Christmas paper chain. Let the fighting begin over whose turn it is to take a link off of the chain in the morning.

Discarded game piles in the rush to get to the next fun thing! If only I lived my daily life with that level of enthusiasm. Laundry would be zinging through the house!
A certain little girl has been thrilled with all the extra Shane time she has gotten over the last week. Christmas vacation will not come soon enough for her!

Our gargantuan stockings made with love by Mark's grandmother! Trying filling these suckers without breaking the bank. They will be getting more practical things in their stockings this year. Socks, know, all the exciting stuff!! Don't worry. I will make sure there is sugar to be consumed and a few fun things. Getting ready to share how we do Christmas around here. I would love to hear what you do as well!!

Monday, November 28, 2011


My thoughts have been so scattered lately. Much like my productivity! Last week I had an amazing drive to get things cleaned up and purged once again. It helped that we spent last Sunday at my sisters house and after being in someone else's house that looks a little more tidy it gives you a certain kick in the pants! So the scrubbing and cleaning commenced first thing Monday morning. Although a week later it doesn't really look like that deep cleaning took place. Except for the fact that my bathroom ceilings are still clean! Yes, I scrubbed the ceilings in the bathroom. It was that type of a cleaning binge. So this morning I sat in the bathroom, looked at the clean ceiling and gave a contented sigh. No fingerprints, piles of games or stickers to be found on the ceiling. I have learned that in the future if I want to continue to see the results of all my hard work I will focus on the ceilings! And now I am in the midst of painting my kitchen. We had a wall removed last month and the kitchen has a smattering of different colors and drywall mud! It looks even more ridiculous since I started painting on Friday and haven't gotten any further. Introducing my sporadic productivity! Although we did have people over both Thursday and Friday last week and then went to Mark's side of the family on Saturday for Thanksgiving! So, I kind of have a reason for not getting back to it until today. I told myself I would not decorate for Christmas until it is finished so that is my driving force to complete things. We cheated a little bit and put up the stockings!

Speaking of Thanksgiving: I had these grandiose ideas to blog everyday the month of November even if it was just a sentence or two to keep a running tally of all the things I am grateful for in my life! That worked well! We did have some friends over for the first time on Thanksgiving who were unable to travel home to be with family! We had a great day! At least Mark and I and our kids did. I won't speak for other people. And then Friday brought more friends and a sleepover for Shane! We really like his buddy and weren't sure we should return him but decided it was best for everyone to take him home.

So maybe I will blog a little more during the month of December and incorporate some of the lessons I have been learning yet again. Sneak peak: more on contentment and laying up treasure where it cannot be destroyed.

How is that for scattered?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A Small Catch-Up Post

I am sure I am one of the millions caught up into the vortex of the unfolding scandal at Penn State. It has pulled me in, occupied my mind, broken my heart, blanketed me with heaviness and overall has just shocked me at the depravity of man once again. I am not going to even attempt to convey anything wise here in regards to this situation. Instead, I am going to show you what the kids have been doing over the past week. I am just a tad more comfortable talking about my children than corruption. I had literally just put the camera up to snap her picture when she started doing the "poop walk". Which obviously is just a fancy way to say she pooped in her pants. Always lovely!

Catching some sunshine in the leaves!

Eden seems to gather her very own leaf pile in her hair! At times it is almost enough to have an indoor leaf pile to jump into.

I love the soul deep in her eyes! She is the gift I didn't know I needed!

Eating slushies at the roller skating rink! We are cool like that!

Talk about beautiful eyes!!!

An afternoon with friends at a local fall festival! Eden loves Ea.

Fabulous face painting with friends!

Kids eat free day!! Works well for our crew.

Pretty fancy face painting! I wish I could tell you all the fabulous things Judah and Shane's teachers had to say about them at their parent teacher conferences but then I would be one of those obnoxious gloating parents. Suffice it to say they are splendid students (or so I am told). Nice to hear encouraging things about your children since sometimes it is hard to keep things in perspective on the home front.

Nice nostrils Mr. T!

Sunny days spent outside before the cold winds of winter blow through!

Feeling a kinship with the squirrels as she checks out a stash of nuts!

Relaxing on the trampoline with pillows, blankets and "fluffies". I have officially given up trying to have half decent pillows on my couches. They get drug outside and all over the house.

Walking to meet the boys as they get home from school. Oh, how they love this part of the day!! And so do I!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Orphan Sunday

After you have walked the journey of adoption things like "National Adoption Awareness Month" and "Orphan Sunday" pack a much deeper and harder punch than before. Suddenly, it all hits home. And you have a deep longing for that connection to happen in the hearts of more people! The beauty and blessing that comes with adoption. The growth in our hearts, the brokenness in the challenges, the days of relentless love that begin to soak in the wounded areas to bring a bit more healing and the joy of your child (or children) leaning into your love! It all comes with a price. But anything worth doing or giving your life for is worth the price! And I trust you all know I am not talking the literal cost. One of the most striking differences in the pictures of Eden before we came and the pictures after we came are her eyes. Every picture, and we didn't have many, of Eden in the orphanage have blank eyes. Void of emotion and life.

Her eyes sparkle!!! And sometimes they shoot flames!! Either way they have life in them now!

Parenting a child with unseen wounds has challenges for sure. But isn't that kind of the deal when we sign up as parents? There are so many unknowns as parents. But one things I am sure of: a safe haven of love is a great place to start in overcoming the hurdles that present as our children grow and learn!

So today I say: Go for it!!! If you have felt a nudge, a whisper, a tug on your heart there just might possibly be a child who is praying for you tonight!! Seriously! Think about that for a moment. What if there is a child that is asking God tonight to please, please bring them a mom and a dad. And what if the answer to that prayer is you? Is it possible? Absolutely!! And I am not off the hook either. I am very aware that there are children praying for families and unless we take some steps to answer His call then they will keep waiting. We are wrestling with how this looks for our family and I can say we are closer than ever to starting the process again. Praying and seeking what direction we should go but it seems to be getting a bit clearer. And for that I am grateful!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Older Boys

So it is glaringly obvious to me that my older boys do not get as much "airtime" as the munchkins. They aren't around as much (sigh) plus as they grow they tend to mellow out a bit. But every now and then conversations occur that bring a smile to my face for days on end. Before we get to the fun conversations we first need to visit a paper Shane brought home from school this week. He was learning about fact and opinions and he had to fill in the blanks with the first word that came to his mind. Here is his list:

Teachers are............Kind.
Mothers are.............Awesome (woohoo)
Kittens are...............Cute
Babies are................Nice
Old people are.........Smart
My neighbors are....Cool
Girl Scouts are.........Weird
Football players are......Sweet

My favorite was that girl scouts are weird. So typical for a boy that age.

Last week I took Judah out on his date night. We rotate a different child every week until Mark has taken them all on a date and then we begin the rotation again with myself. And then it goes back to Mark. You get the idea. Anyhow, my last date with Judah he wanted to go crayfish hunting which we did and I must admit was extremely fun!! This time we got ice cream. On the way to Dairy Queen we somehow got on the subject of heaven. Cannot remember how our conversation went in that direction. In my opinion the most important part of the whole conversation was his dismay at realizing that hunting may not be a priority in heaven. In fact, he feels like if there is no hunting in heaven that, that will be a huge drawback for people even wanting to go there. I assured him that if hunting continues to be extremely important in heaven that I am sure God will make sure he gets to hunt. What else do you say to his dismay?

On another day Judah, Shane and I sat at the table and they brought up baptism. Both expressing a desire to be baptized but not wanting it to happen in front of a lot of people. They said just family and cousins. They would prefer to be baptized in the creek at the cabin which I think is awesome!!! Anyway, as we talked I realized Judah was getting more and more quiet. Shane was asking questions and talking but Judah wasn't. After a few minutes he said kind of hesitantly, "Um....if I get baptized.....(long pause).....can I still have a fist fight?" I am sure my eyes about popped out of my head as I felt a desperate need to laugh but I also knew he was dead serious! I said to him, "Are you planning on having a fist fight?" He assured me he isn't planning on it. What Mark and I were able to gather from him was that he thought if you are baptized you can never do anything wrong again. And what if sometime he found himself in a fight? What would happen? Of course we talked for a while about the symbolism of baptism and how it does not magically make you faultless. It seems as though he understood the weight of publicly professing his heart for Jesus and he doesn't want to do something in haste. For which I quietly applauded him!! Who knows? Maybe the next time we converge on Slate Run the boys will be baptized in the creek!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Running Rampant

My daughter seems to be the equivalent of a full time job just herself. I feel like this blog has been very Heidi related lately but my goodness!! Tonight for instance....Mark and the boys are out for wings so I thought the girl and I would have a nice little quiet evening. I am clearly delusional people!! I fed them, got them in their jammies, decided to quickly vacuum the kitchen since it is a disaster due to some demolition/construction (another story for another time). Sounds reasonable, right? So tell me why this is what I walked in on only 3 minutes into my vacuuming?

A stark naked Heidi sitting on the sink playing in the water! I am throwing in the towel for the day people!! We are going all kinds of crazy at our house tonight! True story!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

New Blog Link

I added a blog under my links on the right hand side of a blog titled "A Place Called Simplicity". I read this blog almost daily for a few reasons: they have refused the American dream and instead embraced simplicity in order to love orphans, she is a mother to many children and keeps bringing them home even though she should be looking forward to an empty nest and she just keeps things pretty real. I strongly suggest that you take a look at her blog and read over the past few weeks. Especially the past week as they have been awarded the privilege of loving another sweet Ugandan girl! One of my favorite quotes from her ever is this: the only special need a child has is to have a family!! So very true.

I was reading a book to my munchkins yesterday afternoon and happened upon a page that I wasn't sure how to process. It is from the book "Just in Case You Ever Wonder" by Max Lucado and this particular page went like this: And since you are so special, God wanted to put you in just the right home...where you would be warm when it's cold, where you'd be safe when you're afraid, where you'd have fun and learn about heaven. After lots of looking, God sent you to me. And I'm so glad He did.

You already know where I am heading with this I'm sure. I had two children nestled in at my sides and one on my lap as I read this story. I felt two very different emotions at that passage. I felt a sense of peace in knowing that God has in fact granted Eden all those things and yet I felt a gnawing ache as I thought of the 160,000,000 orphans who I couldn't sit down with and read this story too without feeling like a fraud. Now, I am very aware that I cannot take care of all of those children but I know I can do more! How about you? Can you sponsor a child or two? Could you open your home to foster or adopt a child(ren) who might need you? Would you be willing to at least ask God how He might want to expand you? Praying blessings over you as you pursue His heart for you!!!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


My cousin and I "swimming"! At least that is what I am assuming we were doing. Whatever we were doing I assure you it was his idea and I was an innocent follower. I am quite sure!

The one thing I do not like about growing up and being adults is the distance that comes with time. I don't mean emotional distance but actual miles between us. There is always a connection once you have played in the water in your underwear!! I just miss talking, laughing, singing and listening to him play/sing. So Jenny, this picture is for you. As a window into his silly boyhood days and as a warning for what may be in store for your future!!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Real Life

One of my all time favorites of the kids! One of Mark's sisters' took this picture during the summer and I return to it often! I love the freedom that comes with warm weather and am always sad to see it go. Having to get shoes, sweatshirts, hats and gloves on feels so restrictive. I would much rather have the freedom to run in and out of the house with doors wide open. Time to bolster my mind and get ready for the months ahead. Lots of energy that still needs to be burned by growing children but it happens within the walls of the house instead of the wide open spaces of the yard. Somedays I wake up with creative energy and the days seems to go smoothly. Somedays I wake up and things seem to unravel before I can even get my wits about me. Those are the "Little Engine that Could" days. Silently (sometimes not so silently) telling myself "I think I can, I think I can" until the day fades away. A day is never wasted but sometimes they are survived more than enjoyed! There was a time that I felt guilt over the survived days but now I know they are part of this journey called motherhood. And they are equally as important as the days that are fully enjoyable because you treasure those wonderful days all the more!

*click on the picture to enlarge so you can see their expressions even better

Thursday, October 20, 2011

What Goes Around.....

.....comes around! At least that is what I have heard. And in the case of my voracious climber I would say that holds true. According to my mother, I was a climber. I have vivid memories of climbing everything I could all day long as a youngin'. Trees, top beams of the barn, more trees, the roof of the garage - you name it. If it could be scaled, I was on the job! The one difference between Heidi and I is that she gets into everything! That is the motive behind her climbing. My mother says I climbed for enjoyment more than as a means to get what I wanted. Not true with Heidi! There are few places that are safe from her sticky fingers. I had to get rid of my stool in the kitchen that helped me reach things since it also helped her reach things! Pardon the underwear. Pretty much every picture I have of her recently is in her underwear. Partly because she is in such a rush after using the potty that she barely holds still for her underwear and partly because she goes so often that it is easier to only remove one article of clothing. Judge me if you want. I won't even know and she will go on running around in her underwear happily!

She got what she wanted!! She likes to rummage through my cupboards. Her favorite find is chocolate chips!

The past week it has been climbing in the fridge to get stuff. This happens upwards of 342 times a day! Exaggeration is possible but then again maybe not. I remove her. every. single. time and remind her that she could just use words to tell me what she wants. Maybe I will grow to love her independence!

These last few warm days have found the kids playing with sidewalk chalk which they love. I love finding them actually getting along for a few minutes! Honestly, I love anything they do that keeps them from fighting! What I don't love about chalk is the following:

Hand prints and smeared chalk all over the front door.

As well as the walls of the house. But you can't argue that the little hand print is precious!!

Monday, October 17, 2011

A Hiatus

I had a bit of an unplanned blogging hiatus but sometimes life happens! I have been busy canning and freezing the last of the seasons goodness in between perfecting my peace keeping skills with my kiddos. My skills are sorely lacking if you look at the amount of squabbles! And really I have been questioning the pros and cons of this whole blogging world. One of the pros for me is that family and extended family get to stay in tune with what is happening in our world. I have also "met" some really neat people through this blog and am grateful for those friendships (shout out to Charity)!! One of the blaring cons is that you can either accurately or inaccurately paint of picture of your life. I have always wanted to portray an accurate picture so that my weaknesses aren't hidden causing someone to feel inept. Not that I think I am all that or anything! Because I am not! But I have found myself reading some blogs and walk away feeling really lacking. We are not made to compare our lives to others but to walk in obedience to what is laid out in front of us! You can post the right pictures with the lighting shining just perfectly, say the perfect words, protray yourself the way you see yourself (which can be inflated), etc. So over the past two weeks I have been sorting through my feelings and still don't know what I think. Shows you how indecisive I am! So for today I am just going to continue on in the general everyday life and pictures. I am also aware that my everyday life may be entertainment for some so you are welcome! Flying kites on a windy, fall day!!

Don't you love all the colors these two packed onto their two tiny bodies? Heidi insists upon dressing herself now and lets just say it can sometimes be painful to the eyes!

Heidi's favorite part of the day is when her Shane gets off the bus! She asks him to read "dories" and he sweetly complies. If they watch movies or read stories Heidi is usually right next to him! She doesn't seem to understand the concept of personal space in regards to Shane.

We have been spending time with friends soaking in the last of the warm weather! Life is always more fun with friends!

Tristan rocking his "old man" shoes and striped socks! And he actually went somewhere looking like this and I just laughed! Who says that your style should be pre-determined by mainstream media/fashion designers?

We have spent more time than I care to admit perfecting spiderman skills. All in the day of the life......