Giving Thanks (inspired by)

Thanks be to God, Father, Son and Spirit, for the abundance of good things he pours on His children.
We are but few, but His blessings are many.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Home :)

Hey kids- are you missing home yet?

I thought I'd send you a couple pictures, so you could remember what it looks like!

Bet you've never seen it so clean!

Boys, I cleaned your room for you.
I also labeled it, so that you will know what a clean room looks like next time I tell you to do it :)

...anyone think this will work? :)

Girls, I didn't really have to do much to make your room beautiful. You do a good job with it!


We also made a few changes while you were gone. I thought you might like to see them!

We put a guest bed in the music room:


We put the entertainment center in the dining room:

I'll be putting some of our craft stuff, books, and games in there. Also, notice grandma Lorraine's tea set on the top! I hope having it up there will help me remember to use it more often!

And now for the fun part.
A space for my aspiring teachers and their little students:

Here's a close-up of the "classroom."

And of course, a stage for drama/music performances!
Notice the friendly audience!


Can't wait to see you tomorrow kids!!!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Time with the Grandparents

The kids are away with the grandparents this week. I know they are making awesome memories, just like we did last time my mom and dad came down for a visit.

Here are a few of those highlights from their visit last month:

Marcus: Are they coming today? Is it today yet?
With sidewalk chalk they wrote, “we love Nana and Bump!”

  • Eldon running up to Nana with a full-body hug
  • The “good-to-see-you” gift exchange.:
  • For dad: Flamingo and candle. For mom: flower basket. For me: new shirt and body mist. From Aggie to Nana and Bump: approximately 20 beautiful pictures.
  • Mom’s eye-rolling at dad’s slowness.
  • Dad’s head-shaking at mom’s hurry.
  • Dad’s shock, “He’s peeing out on the tree, right in the front yard!” Hearty laughter. “What are you guys, the Clampits?”
  • Dad’s big laughter at one of my favorite kid picture: “You’re the best mom I ever had.” Love, Lorraine.
  • A long kitchen hug with my mom. We really missed each other.
  • Dad’s new car surprise! After driving his Yukon for 300,000 miles (until it finally died on the side of the road), he paid cash for a new Lexus!
  •  Mom folds up the dirty clothes she finds on the floor.
  • Dad and his bag of cheese. (He’s on the Atkins diet.)
  • Josh and dad talking politics over the grill, laughing about our constitutional right to high speed internet.
  • Mom asks me, with politeness, “Don’t you think they should wear shirts, at least into town?” I shrug, whatever. Then I realize she’s being nice and I’m being a hillbilly. I get the shirts.
  • They leave at 8 with the boys for a night in the hotel, breakfast included. Mom wants snacks for them, just in case.
  • My sister calls to make sure they got down here ok. “They’d have a fit if I didn’t call them, but of course they don’t call me!” we laugh.
  •  Mom on the trampoline, shrieking!
  • Mom’s still getting used to our countrified lifestyle. (She asked, “Do they have shoes?” Almost as if she were asking, “Do you even believe in shoes anymore?”)
  • Seth can make it all the way across the pool now!
  • Dad letting Pete sit next to his work area in the kitchen while he chops peppers, onions and mushrooms to go with the steak they brought.
  • Mom walking across the log in the woods.
  • Mom just loved the horse, like we do.
  • Joking about Branson MO, “You'd love it. It’s like an amusement park for old folks,” said Josh 

We leave and we hug goodbye, and they kids ask me when I get in the van, “Why’s nana crying?”

Enjoy those precious days with your grandparents, kiddos!

Monday, June 18, 2012

A note to the kids, from Oliver

Hi kids.
We kinda miss you around here.

Today, mom told me she missed you so much, she wanted ME to be her kid.
She told me I had to act like you guys.

So I tried to drive your car... 

but it was too big for me.

So we just had some wrestle time. 
But I'm not very ticklish, and mom doesn't like when I bite her feet.

Instead, we played hide-n-seek in the basement.

She found me.

She found me again.

Then  mom said we had to do our jobs.
She told me to clean my bathroom.

I didn't obey.

Instead, I played with some of my friends.

We put on some Taylor Swift and danced all around the room.

Then, I got hungry.

Really hungry.

Mom saw me pigging out like that, so she sent me to my room...
I mean, the boy's room.

Hey, I didn't know birds lived in here!

Bird, do you know mom sent me in here just because I was eating?
I'm SO angry!

You're angry, too?

We decided to be friends.

Finally mom let me out.
She said it was time for me to practice my piano.

I'm not very good.

And it's a little scary up here.

Can I watch TV now, mom?
Mom said I could...
but I couldn't figure out how to use the remote.

She mom said she'd play a game with me.
We tried to play Sorry, but I didn't get it,
so we played with toys instead.

Then, I got ready for bed.
I crawled in my hiding place, and then I folded my hands to pray for you guys.
Then, I blew mom a kiss, and said goodnight.
(Well, I tried to say that, but it sounded more like "Meow!")

Goodnight Lorraine, Aggie, Seth, Marcus, Eldon and Peter!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Saturday, June 16, 2012

'Twas a week without Rainy

'Twas a week without Rainy, and Aggie, her sister
Was cleaning and drawing sweet pictures. She missed her.
Dad and mom missed her too; so did grumpy Pete,
He fussed on mom’s hip while she fixed food to eat.

The other boys missed her, in their little-boy way
Making messes like usual, but then looking up, “HEY!
Where’s Rainy?” they’d wonder. And again mom explained,
“She’s at camp, boys. We have a whole week without Rain.”

Rain’s jobs in the house were done by the others:
Her sister, the boys, and sometimes, her mother.
Seth helped with the baby; Aggie made all the beds,
While Rainy played games and went swimming instead

During long afternoons, while the little boys snored,
Mom worked on her writing, and Aggie was bored.
With no sister to swim with, Aggie read books instead.
Not alone— but with Oliver, the kitty, in bed.

Aggie got a gift bag, put a lollipop in it,
Set it on the bed while she counted the minutes;
Put the dolls by the teddy with the “Welcome Home” sign,
“How long?” “Three more days honey.” “THREE?” Aggie whined.

“Can I sleep with you guys?” Aggie asked mom and dad.
“I do NOT want to sleep with the boys! They smell bad!”
“We do not!” yelled her brothers. “You do too!” Aggie said.
Mom laughed. “You can sleep on our couch, not the bed.”

While the boys dreamed of tractors in their hot sandy beds,
Mom curled up with Aggie and they talked and they read
As Rainy sat by the campfire with friends
Aggie and mom prayed for Rainy again:

That she’d learn about Jesus, that she’d have lots of fun
As she played in the water and the woods and the sun.
That God would protect her, and give her good weather,
That He’d keep her safe ‘till we’re all back together.

Aggie made one more picture. She picked some fresh flowers.
Rainy would be home soon. “How many more hours?”
Finally mom yelled, “everyone one in the van!”
Kids jumped up off the couch and they ran and they ran

The van took them to camp where they found the big sister
The hugged her so tight, Rainy knew that they missed her
We thank God for camp fun, for good weather and friends,
We thank God you’re back home now!
We love you!  
The end

.Photo: Reunion

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Tiny Tykes highlights

All settled in ...

These are the security llamas:

Don't cross 'em.

But you can feed them:

Aggie and Freckles:

Seth and Thunder:

Yee haw!

Getting ready to zip!

Zip away!!!
(Seth: no thanks. Aggie: Wheeeeee!)

Getting off the zip line

Craft time

Our cabin, Kickapoo