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.

Friday, April 25, 2014


Musical night at White Creek! Great job girls (and EVERYONE!)

Tonight, I sat in the gym grinning like a fool with tears in my eyes, watching my girls sing their hearts out in the school musical.  Why do musicals make me so emotional? I think it has something to do with all of you up there singing about the grace of God... while, at the same time, standing there BEAMING and blooming and showing the world that you are NOT little kids any longer. 

Look what our God can do!
Look what our God can do!
What was lost is found redeemed and turned around...

And you did celebrate!  I wanted to get up and dance, but I knew that would embarass you.  Instead I sat and prayed that those words, that His grace, would go deep down into your heart and stay with the song lyrics that will now be in your memory forever.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

art class

Art class with mommy: Today we learned how to do a watercolor sunset, with a silhouette in front (mine was a tree and a house.) “Now kids, this is just my example. You do not have to do a tree and a house if you do not want to.” Later, one by one, they brought me their finished projects.

Lorraine: A lovely tree and a house
Seth: A lovely tree and a house and a family
Marcus: A lovely tree and a house


Aggie: “Wow, Aggie, what's this?” 

“Well, that's Seth, and he's throwing a paper airplane with a squirrel on it because the squirrel wanted to jump on and fly. And he had a ball, but when Seth threw him the ball started to fall. And that's Copper waiting there to catch the ball. And in the middle, that's me and Lorraine, and we're standing like that because we are posing and waiting for you to take our picture. And the house is a little small because it's really far away because we are playing in the yard at sunset.”

That girl!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

To Eldon on your fifth birthday

To Eldon, on your fifth birthday,

The other day, I could tell you needed some mommy time. The chaos of this house wears on you sometimes, and I think you get tired of competing with all the noise. You long to be seen, to be reminded you are loved (we all do, don't we?)  So I let you come along while I dropped off the girls. When they were gone, you moved to the front seat, and you picked the song. I cranked it up loud, and on impulse, I grabbed your hand as we sang together.  Your hand held mine gladly, and that sweet little smirk appeared on your face, the one I see when you are seen, loved, and happy. We stayed that way all the way home, and I could tell your heart was filling up to bursting.

Five years ago, you were born into this loud chaotic family. At that time, Aggie was horribly ill.  You were a bright spot of life and grace during one of our most difficult years as a family.  You were a sermon to me, a daily reminder of God's life-giving, miracle-working power.  You constantly demanded that we hold you close, and you still love to receive love through closeness.  You hold your raggedy blankie, you curl up nearby, and you are content. I am learning so much from you, about embracing, sitting close, and just being together.

"MAAAAAM! You HAVE to come see this!"
You are a "noticer," and an excited one. You yelled this to me last week, running to me, grabbing my hand and dragging me to the flower garden. "Buds! Those are gonna be leaves, mama!"
"Spring is coming, Eldon, isn't that wonderful!?"  Finally.  And thanks to you, we will stop and notice every indication that it is so: The buds, the (finally) green grass, the robin, the sprouting flowers, the other robin, the warm breeze, the other robin...

I love the way you notice, and I love that you want to share this with me.

You know what else I noticed? Before you were even five, you jumped on that two-wheeler and conquered it.  Oh, child number five, do you know that you are the youngest Cook kid to learn to ride? You were wearing a winter coat that day you first wanted to try, so your first little spills were padded.  Now, there are no spills, only speed, and that proud smile.  I see, Eldon.  I am proud of you.

My dear Eldie, you are loved.  Happy fifth birthday.

Mom (or as you say MAAAAAM!!!)

Friday, April 4, 2014

If you can sing it... you can do it

If you can sing it, you can do it.

A lesson Lorraine learned this week!  She and her friend Alyssa wanted to ask me to let her go over to church early to help with the lenten dinner.  Their request was beautifully presented in a song, a parody of "Let it go."  

It was so fun!
I said yes, of course!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Signs of spring

Winter is finally leaving us down here!  Below are some of my favorite spring pictures from this week. Family travelling here from MI- here are things to look forward to!

Grateful for...

201. Reading in the park:

outside on the rock pile:

203: Eldon, my noticer, noticing new growth!

204: Red buds on the trees (Marcus pointing them out)

205:  Wiggly things- Marcus discovered this guy accidentally when he broke this stick!

206:  Buds in my yard!

207: blooms at church!

208: Pastor Brandt's tree, in bloom- the first to bloom in the garden :)
(Wonder what he's up to today...)

Little girls, who also notice and rejoice in spring with me.

210:  Plenty of rain.