Thursday, December 4, 2014

Oh Christmas Tree

We talked Daddy into getting the tree out Tuesday night. I'm not sure if it's because you guys have never had a "real" tree, but it doesn't seem to bother you a bit that your tree comes from the attic. It certainly does not bother me that this is the tenth Christmas season this tree has graced our home. I love a good investment. Hah!

When you were little, every tractor, cow, ball, puppy, playground, etc. would elicit squeals of delight from you. These days it takes a little more to get those kinds of reaction. So, your excitement as we pulled out decorations made my heart full. 

I love how many of our decorations are homemade. Or, should I say, school made. 'Cause whatever other things your mama does well, crafting is not one of them. Your ornaments make me happy, nonetheless, especially the ones with your sweet faces on them.

 Luke, I know you don't find this amusing, but it never, ever fails to get a giggle out of me. I mean, which one of your teachers decided to use the picture of you with your finger in your nose? Now that's funny! I don't care who you are.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

A Change In Focus

When I first began blogging, it was an outlet, a way to connect, a way to document "the moments", and it was just fun. We had a little blogging community, several of us moms with toddlers and preschoolers. I would write, knowing that my friends in the same stage of life would be writing and reading along with me. Our kids have gotten a little older, our lives a little busier, and blogging has tapered off. I miss it, that feeling of being connected with those not close enough to share a play date. I also know it is just the natural progression of life.

I feel I need to shift the focus of my blog slightly. Anyone reading along (anyone???) may not notice the difference. In my mind, my audience to this point, has been outward - those out there reading. These days, I find myself wanting to keep track of the memories of our days so my children will know how present I am for every moment of their lives. I'm in this thing, kids. I'm not wishing away your days. I'm feeling and enjoying and remembering and aching for this very moment. I'm here. One hundred percent of me. Do I some times lose my cool and act like it's all too much? Yep. Because, sometimes, it feels very much like too much. But that moment passes, and I'm back on track, and I'm right where I want to be more than anywhere else in the world.  I'm giving you all of me. I hope when you look back on your childhood you feel that completely.

But just in case you don't...I write. And it's for you, Luke. You, Eli. You, Judah. You, Susanna. When you've outgrown my lap, you can look back here and know that I counted every single one of your childhood days as my treasure.

Monday, November 17, 2014

When Daddy is Left to His Own Devices

One of Kris' main jobs in our house is keeping us in good humor. He can often be heard laughing at himself, making silly noises, making jokes to get a good laugh. He loves practical jokes, and we love him for it. He's almost always in a good mood, and if he ever finds himself in a bad mood, he'll do something to amuse himself and pull himself out of it.

Exhibit A 
(She looks suspiciously proud of her ensemble.)

 "Daddy did it!"

 I'm beginning to suspect Susanna got his sense of humor.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Pumpkin Patch 2014

I really am trying with every fiber of my being to capture memories and write them down. They're just happening so fast! I am proud to report, however, that we did make it for our annual pumpkin patch visit and picture session. The results:

Sweet little faces peaking through the background never gets old to me. I love it every. single. year.

These blue eyes also get me every single year.

Susanna loved every second of the pumpkin patch (that I wasn't trying to get her to be still for a picture). This gal is the belle of the ball wherever we go anyway. The tutu sent us over the top in adoration.

The best I could get of the three stooges. Luke seems to think rabbit ears are hilarious, no matter how many times we assure him they are not.

This kid and his lips. I wish it was possible to really show what they look like live. When he's telling a story, it's all I can do not to grab his little face and smush his lips with mine. Sometimes I fail to restrain myself.

Eli has taken to posing with his face propped on his hand, kind of like how girls pose with their hand on their hips. It suits his serious face...

...which is only for pictures. This is the real Eli.

A family photo. A real, everybody's looking (almost) family photo. Nothing short of a miracle, folks.

Belle of the ball, I tell you.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Let's All Be Brave by Annie Downs

When I saw Annie Downs' book Let's All Be Brave as one of my options for books to review on BookLook Bloggers, I was thrilled. I went to college with Annie and know her to authentic and funny. I expected her book to be the same, and I was not disappointed. What I did not expect was to weep through a large portion of the book.

I can't even say why, exactly, this book made me weep except that it hit me in my tender spot. You know, the place where God has already been poking and prodding. My "word" that God gave me at the beginning of this year was BRAVE. I have had, as we all do, many chances to practice being brave this year, but in reading this book I feel God's summons to me was taken to a new level.

Let's All Be Brave challenges and encourages, awakening old dreams while inspiring new ones, highlighting big acts of bravery while applauding small ones. Even in reviewing this, I feel myself shiver with anticipation for opportunities that I know are coming my way. Chances to say yes and dive into the unknown as well as the difficult known.

I definitely recommend Annie's book. Even if you don't read something in it you've never seen before, you will be reminded of many truths and opportunities you will want to grab hold of for the future.

I gave my opinion on this book in exchange for a free copy from BookLook Bloggers. My opinions are my own.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Susanna's First Birthday

If I had known how fast this year would fly, I probably would have wanted to chain myself to the floor and stop all activities so I could sit and not miss a single second of this sweet child's first year. I cannot believe she's already one. I cannot even begin to describe how much joy she has brought our family. From the second her eyes open in the morning to the time I shut her door at night she is receiving kisses, hugs, silly faces...we basically all act like fools just to be rewarded with her smiles. And she gives them freely.

September 19 was celebrated with dinner at Olive Garden and her birthday was celebrated on the 28th at our new home. We warmed the house and ate birthday cake at the same time. 

a little pre-birthday happiness
 The beautiful cake a family friend made
 Grandma Clair made it just in time for the party
 and friends
 Grandma Bonnie
 a sneak peak of the new house
 It's cake time! She is not sure about this...
 Yes, this looks promising.
 Everybody is staring.
 Okay, give me the cake.
 Fingers are good.
 Hands are better.
 Fistfuls are the best!
 Wait! One more bite!
 Pink mascara
 Wink, wink!

Susie Q! I love you!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Prelude for a Lord by Camille Elliot

I picked up Prelude for a Lord to review from BookLook Bloggers, and I'm so glad I did. I almost passed this book up because I had never heard of this author, and now I'm disappointed that this was Camille Elliot's first book because I wish there were more I could read by her! I've always loved historical novels, but I've decided I especially love the Regency era, which is the time in which Prelude for a Lord is set.

Alethea Sutherton, a twenty-eight year old musician, finds herself fighting both the rules of society and the men in her life for control over her own destiny. Women playing the violin in this time period is considered vulgar, a fact that does not deter Alethea from her love of the instrument. However, when Alethea finds herself endangered by the obsession of one determined to own her precious violin, she must trust a man she would much prefer to dismiss. 

I loved the characters in this book and hope that Camille Elliot will pick up in books to come where she left off with some of the supporting characters. I would definitely recommend Prelude for a Lord and that you keep your eye out for more books by Elliot.

 I received this book from BookLook Bloggers in return for my honest opinion.

Friday, July 25, 2014

A Little Inspiration

I've been sitting here reading some of my past blog entries and laughing so hard. My kids are so darn cute! And since it's getting late in summer vacation, and today was a top-decibel day, I needed to be reminded.

Judah ended up at the ER on Sunday getting stitches in his foot. When they got to the house we're building (See, I'm waaaaaay behind on updates), all the boys had on shoes. You know how the rest of the story goes. So, he has eight stitches in his heel. He probably needs ten or twelve, but the ER doctor was a little too optimistic.

The child has not slowed down for one second. As soon as the drugs wore off he was up and running. I told him numerous times on Monday to stop jumping off of things, but it hasn't worked yet. He really has a high pain tolerance, and he has been an excellent patient. He just needed for the narcotics to get out of his system. He was W-I-L-D for about three days. Wild. Even in the middle of it, though, I couldn't help but laugh, especially when he said something about his "itches". I said, "What? Your foot itches?" He said, "Yes, I have itches in my foot."

Monday, June 30, 2014

Susanna's Dedication

On Mother's Day our church had a baby dedication. We put Susanna in the family heirloom dress and had her dedicated. (Which makes me so stinkin' nervous every time since I have babies who spit! She did great and only left a little drool on it.)

The baby daddy

The dress

The whole family

Kris' parents