So glad you came to visit today! Here at my little corner of bloggy world I share a little bit about everything--family, parenting, goals, struggles, photography, recipes, n more! So curl up with a cup of hot tea {or not} and feel free to peruse around my site! Check out my sidebar for links. And come back again!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Monday Meanderings - July 30

Bible Study... I was doing SO WELL at the beginning of the summer. Getting up early each morning eager to do my Bible reading. And then, it just stopped. I've been sleeping in and other than reading verses for child training I haven't read really anything in awhile!

Memory Verse... Hebrews 12:14
"Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord."

Husband Encouragement...
♥ House cleaning
♥ Lunches for work. And prepare a breakfast for him when he wakes up in the afternoon.
♥ Schedule a date night/day for sometime soonish??

Train Them Up...
* Back to routines... post-dinner kitchen cleanup. I LOVE when we work together to get everything put away and wiped down, and the kids are great helpers!  I need to work to get Carter involved too, because he can easily carry hot pads to the kitchen or containers to the fridge.
* Also need to keep to our weekly cleaning schedule and let the kids help with their tasks.
* I've been more frequently skipping the big kids' naps lately so I can read chapter books with them in the afternoon. I'm more than realizing how little summer is left and how I'm going to miss this time together! But I'm looking forward to other things as well, it'll just take some transition.
* Now that he's a reader, Eli received his very own real Bible for his birthday this year. So I've been teaching him how to find the books of the Bible and the chapters and verses. He's getting the hang of it, and it's such a joy to see him participate and get excited about it.
* Intentional potty training with Carter. He does great when I remember to take him to the potty!

Personal Goals...
* My friend Nikki and I are really working on our weigh-loss goals together. I've been back to the treadmill again for the first time in FOREVER, and ran 4x last week!!  Along with keeping track of calorie intake. So far there hasn't been ANY weight change, but I think it's also a bad time in my month. So we'll keep plugging away!
New Habit of the Month...  {august}
* We recently started a new family Bible study/devotional. So we'll be doing this each morning or evening. For now we mostly read it in the morning but once school starts it'll probably be evening.

MUST Do... 
* car maintenance Friday?
* call my Moppet workers!!
* bills
* research cell phone plans

Zone(s)... Basement. Working on fixin up the treadmill room so the kids can potentially play down there while I run instead of me having to wait til naptime or put on a movie.

Menu - TBD
M - salad and sandwiches
T - 
W - 
Th - 
F -
S - 
Su - 

* this morning the kids and I had a mini Olympics party at a friends' house. We don't have cable TV to watch anything so my friend Kayleigh invited us over. So fun!
* Tomorrow the kids and I are hosting an ice cream party as their reward for completing their 100 books this summer!
* Wednesday we're going to Omaha to see the Lorax movie with my SIL and Claire. $2 movie!
* Dinner out with church friends Thursday evening.
* Possibly another girls night with other friends Saturday night!

3 things I'm thankful for today...
1. relaxing morning. Even though we still went out, it was a fun morning just chatting with friends.
2. encouraging friends and accountability partner. It helps so much to go through things TOGETHER.
3. family. we just had all the family here over the weekend for Eli's birthday party, and it's always such a blessing to be able to do that.  =)

Friday, July 27, 2012

{Photo Challenge} Day 16

Sorry, as you probably noticed, I got hung up on the photo challenge! A week of busy VBS plus lack of inspiration. Here I am though, moving forward...

Day 16: Long exposure
(Insert mini photo lesson) That means slow shutter speed. (numbers like 1/10 to 1/125. When that bottom number gets higher, the shutter gets faster. For humans try not to set that bottom number less than 125.) Creates drag when there is motion. When you have moving children, you don't WANT drag, you want them in focus. But instances when drag is desired would be waterfalls, city traffic lights, writing with a glow stick or sparkler, and other creative purposes I can't really think of right now. =)  

Having no access to any of those things mentioned above, I chose the motion of a pinwheel. 

 Exciting stuff, let me tell ya!

Coming next:
Day 17: Technology

Note: to see previous posts for photo challenge click the Photography category on my sidebar

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

How can it be?

... that there are only 3 weeks til school starts???  Wow.  This summer has been so great, so full of wonderful memories.

But there is so much yet to do!  And this 100 degree heat wave we've been stuck in is thwarting those last plans, like hiking and camping and trail riding and tree adventuring and park playing. There are books I want to read to the kids, soo many books I want to read to the kids. And just so little time.

And I'm wondering, why is it so hard to be intentional with our weekend time like we are in the summer??  So here I am, purposing that at least once a month we'll spend a day doing some adventure together as a family. It doesn't have to cost a thing, but there is much to explore and do just in our rural area. You just have to find it.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Sticky faces and a maroon pickup

Thought I'd update on my own list of One Thousand Gifts...

41. Crazy laughter emerging out of tickling bellies.
42. Messy faces sticky with ice cream.
43. The maroon pickup driving up the lane at the end of a day's work.
44. The rainbow of golden colors at the touch of autumn.
45. A field of diamonds glistening in the snow.
46. Blasts of warm air from the space heater.
47. Summer afternoons on a porch swing.
48. Ice cold sweet tea brought to thirsty lips.
49. Cake for breakfast.
50. A gripping novel.
51. A steaming hot shower.
52. The yellow flashing lights bringing my boy home from school.
53. Silly movie nights with the girls.
54. Spontaneous visits to the park.
55. Piles and piles of laundry for it means we live in abundance.
56. Watching old classics with the kids.
57. Little children sitting in a row.
58. Projects complete.
59. Stroking my cheek against a newborn's soft, warm head.
60. Pretend tea parties with stuffed animals.
61. Morning coffee time on the porch.
62. Children gather 'round for a read-aloud....
63. ...on a blanket in the shade.
64. The carefree days of summer.
65. Morning visits to the bakery.
66. Sprouts of green breaking through the rich soil.
67.  A fresh dose of perspective.
68. Yummy smelling hand soap.
69. Sticky fingers gooey with melted marshmallows.
70. Secretly watching little ones playing so sweetly.
71. Kids that are actually help.
72. Husband that offered to cook dinner.
73. Oldest child reading to younger siblings.
74. Family Bible time.
75. Air conditioning. The end.
76. Cheaper, healthier solutions.
77. Spontaneous, repurpose projects.

To be continued...

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Happiness is the Lord

I randomly have this song bopping through my head this afternoon. An oldie but goodie!!

Happiness is to know the Savior,
Living a life within His favor,
Having a change in my behavior,
Happiness is the Lord.

Happiness is a new creation,

Jesus and me in close relation,
Having a part in His salvation,
Happiness is the Lord.

Real joy is mine,

No matter if the teardrops start,
I've found a secret,
It's Jesus in my heart.

Happiness is to be forgiven,

Living a life that's worth the livin',
Taking a try that leads to Heaven,
Happiness is the Lord.

Real joy is mine,

No matter if the teardrops start,
I've found a secret,
It's Jesus in my heart,
Jesus in my heart.

Happiness is to be forgiven,

Living a life that's worth the livin',
Taking a trip that leads to Heaven,
Happiness is the Lord,
Happiness is the Lord,
Happiness is the Lord.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Live Like That

So everything I say and do points to you.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

{Photo Challenge} Day 15

Day 15: Silhouette

These are actually old pictures I found today while cleaning up the computer space. I tried for new photos tonight with the kids but with the clouds the light just wasn't right, and the next several evenings are busy. I'd love to play around with this more but for now here we are...

And a couple favorites from a friend's photoshoot.

Coming next:
Day 16: Long exposure

Saturday, July 14, 2012

{Photo challenge} Day 14

Day 14: Eyes

These are the eyes
of the boy
 that I fell in love with
the second he was born
These are the eyes
that smile at me
 that plead for attention
 that drip tears when he's sad
 that twinkle when he's happy or teasing.
 These are the eyes
that I gaze into 
and wonder how he's grown so,
how he's changed so,
what he will become.
 These are the eyes
that I watch fade into sweet slumber.
These are the eyes
that show love and life
in so many ways
every day.

Coming next:
Day 15: Silhouette

Friday, July 13, 2012

{Photo Challenge} Day 13

Wow, I actually and very unintentionally got lined up with the dates of the month!  Not sure if that will continue but here we are on this Friday the 13th...

Day 13: Yourself with 13 things

I didn't exactly want to surround myself with 13 THINGS for just one picture, so I'm taking 13 separate pictures of things/people I love. In no specific order, some taken with the ol' cell phone...

1. Java chip drink. Love these, whether from Panera Bread, Starbucks, or MckD's. So yummy, although this caused some serious BRAIN FREEZE. I actually thought I was gonna have to pull the car over when I was driving.

2. My love. The one who walks beside me through the thick and thin, the highs and the lows, the beautiful and the ugly. Simply because he loves me. And that's what love is.

3. My oldest. The one who turned me into a mother. The one who leads the younger ones, who watches over them as their protector. The one who delights me with all of our "firsts" and surprises me with his knowledge and skill.

4. My only daughter. The one who shares a love for things pretty and delicate, who cares lovingly for those around her, and just is so very very sweet.

5. My baby. The one I might hold a little longer, squeeze a littler tighter, and rock a little longer. Because he represents the childhood, the lasts I want to savor and remember forever.

6. My BFF here. Nikki. She's quite incredible, and I'm so thankful our paths finally crossed. She is my morning text, afternoon playdate, Friday night fun. She is my accountability partner and my advice. She is my silly laughs, my listening ear, and so much more. So thankful.

7. My guitar. I love making music. It is therapy to my soul.

8. My camera.  Freezing a moment of time, a memory to be held on to forever, is a passion of mine.  Sometimes annoying to others but sacred to me.

9. Strawberries.  Juicy and delicious fruit is wonderful, a raw treat of the earth.

 10. The scale. Where my current battle lies.

11. The last book I just read recently. Very good. I recommend.

12. The swing. I really just like to act like a kid sometimes.

13. Nature. More therapy to my soul.

So there are my 13 things for today!

Coming next:
Day 14:Eyes

Thursday, July 12, 2012

{Photo Challenge} Day 12

As you can tell, I'm kind of taking this challenge at my own pace since I'm not always home every day to get these taken and posted. 

Day 12: Sunset

Coming next:
Day 13: Yourself with 13 things

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Sunday Psalm

Psalm 51:15-17

O Lord, open my lips, 
and my mouth will declare your praise.
You do not delight in sacrifice,
or I would bring it;
you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit;
a broken and contrite heart,
O God, you will not despise.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

{Photo Challenge} Day 11

Day 11: Something blue

Blue is the pool
that keeps us cool
on these sweltering summer days.
 We play, we splash,
we run and jump
We laugh and do again.
Til Mom calls us in
and it's time to eat
We drip with water and fun.
The sun so bright
 the air so hot
 What else can a child do?
Blue is the pool 
that keeps us cool
on these sweltering summer days.

Coming next: 
Day 12: Sunset

Friday, July 6, 2012

{Photo Challenge} Day 10

Day 10: Childhood memory

At first I wasn't sure what I was going to pick because I have very few childhood memories for some reason. And then it came to me... Just yesterday I was at a Christian bookstore picking out a real Bible (not storybook) for Eli's upcoming birthday gift now that he can read, and on the shelf I saw a copy of the very same Bible I had when I was growing up. Warmed my heart that some things do stick around sometimes. Here's my copy I still have on my shelf...

Coming next:
Day 11: Something blue

{Photo Challenge} Day 9

Day 9: Someone you love

Well since I've been using my children for several of these days, figured I'd use my very own hubby for this one.  The kids and I were out of town though, and he's not a lover of picture-taking, sooo... I'm doing it this way. Taking a picture of a picture, my bedside setup, an area that's special to me, seeing pictures around the room of just the two of us. ♥

Coming next:
Day 10: Childhood memory

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Live Simply.

Over the past year I've become pretty disgusted and saddened by the craze of our nation with electronics. Ipod, ipad, iphone, kindle, DS, data phones, video games, computer games. Anytime, anywhere. People, myself included, are becoming increasingly addicted to these things, distracted, restless, and unable to just BE. To wait. To find something creative to do. Or do nothing at all. To really be PRESENT with one another. We adults have been sucked into all this, and the kids, even the youngest of them, are falling right into the same trap. At play dates and birthday parties I hear kids asking to play video games and it's just soo sad to me!!  

Lately we have put all these things up. Kids used to wake up before us and play games on the ipod until we were up. Now I put the ipod up in the evening so they can't get to it, and they are encouraged to find something quiet to do or read instead. And in the fall I'll be downgrading my phone OFF of the data plan. I can hardly wait. I'm tired of the distractions, the restlessness, the constant need to check Facebook cuz I'm bored. The constant need to share a picture the minute its taken. It's ridiculous. Can we not simply just enjoy the moment? Pictures are important. But the need to share immediately is not. Now it's not that we're COMPLETELY anti-technology, but it's a treat around here, and I like it better that way.

Anyway.... done with my rant now... the point of this post is that I got inspired by Pinterest to use an old window pane as a picture frame. I was bummed that we didn't really have anything and then I realized one day when digging in the shed that we DID! And quickly my idea came together...

I started sorting through old pictures and chose my theme to be "Live Simply" featuring the simplest and most wonderful moments of life. Each of our children being born, picking flowers, blowing dandelions, splashing in puddles, swinging from a tree branch, sandy toes, sunsets, and of course some pictures of our family together. 

This frame used to be our front door until the wind caught it and busted it from the rest of the door. I wiped the glass windows but the rest is exactly as it was. Not repainted and hardly even cleaned. The pictures are just taped.

It's hard to take a picture of the whole thing because of all the reflections from the windows on the opposite wall so there's a bunch of pictures to see everything up close...