Tuesday, May 31, 2011

May 31st 365 challenge


This is my super guy.  We are on a total superhero kick.  Again.

Remember, I've done this before.   When Michael and Benjamin were this age...  then again when Nathanael and Samuel were this age (though they are totally into it again with the little guys...) and now Timothy and Christopher.

Kansas City Missouri temple- May 29th, 2011

The weather is getting warmer, and, barring tornadoes, the work goes on!  You can see some of the upper story windows and all the brickwork going up on the stake center.

May 30th 365 challenge


Tomatoes and peppers ...  still working on the rest of the garden. 

Monday, May 30, 2011

May 29th 365 challenge


Liberty ready to head home after church... via a drive by the temple.  During which she fell asleep.

May 28th 365 challenge


Robins' nest right by our bedroom window.  Kids have enjoyed watching them build it... and now there are baby birds, too.

May 27th 365 challenge


Christopher reading a book.  The book is almost as big as he is.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

May 26th 365 challenge


Finally.  I mean, wait, we're girly now.  No, I mean, yay for enough hair to do something with!  (and if you can't tell what I'm talking about, she has a TINY little pigtail on the top of her head.  Tiny.  We do bald well here.  She has a little bit more hair now... Emilie didn't have enough hair til 20 months or so either.

May 25 365 challenge


More stormy weather... no tornadoes near us though plenty from this storm system.  We did spend 2 hours in the basement under a tornado warning plus sirens. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

May 24th 365 challenge


When some of the storms were just starting... all this rain is WHY this looks so startlingly green to me... raised in Southern California, spent a lot of time in Nevada and then school in BYU as well as 6 years in Texas... this is, WOW, GREEN! to me.  Yes, we spent 4 years in Ohio and 9 months in Pennsylvania but I'm still not used to it.

Monday, May 23, 2011

May 23rd 365 challenge


We have another toothless one in the family!  Samuel lost his first tooth today at lunchtime.  Maybe the tooth fairy will remember to visit our house tonight....

Kansas City Missouri temple- May 22nd, 2011

LOVE the stonework on the walls.  Temple with stake center in front.

Love the stonework.

The temple!

Stake Center brickwork

Angel Moroni
So excited.  I think the temple trip to St. Louis on Saturday really brought home how great it will be to have a temple that is 10 minutes away versus a 12 hour day to go to the one across the state.  The temple is looking more and more beautiful everyday as they add the little details on the outside as well as landscaping and outdoor things like the parking lot.  I know there's still a lot of work on the inside, but we appreciate what we can see!

May 22nd 365 challenge

Waiting for Dad to come out to the van after church.  Can you tell everyone is ready to leave?  Who is not in their seat?  We have 2 empty seats...

May 21st 365 challenge


Michael and Benjamin in front of the St. Louis temple during their temple trip on Saturday.  It will be nice when a temple trip consists of a 10 minute drive instead of 4 hours (each way).

Friday, May 20, 2011

May 20th 365 challenge


New glasses after more than 6 years... definitely taking some getting used to.  (smaller lenses, etc.)  Still a good thing :)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

May 19th 365 challenge


And the question of the day is, was it worth the effort moving it from the neighbor's driveway?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

May 18th 365 challenge


Christopher in a nutshell.  Taking a picture of him smiling and showing me his arm... this is the result.

Kansas City Missouri temple- May 15th, 2011

Love it!  The stake center has a steeple now and some brickwork.  The temple doesn't have many changes but is still just beautiful.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

May 17th 365 challenge


She dragged a chair in, stole Christopher's book, and joined us for scripture reading.

Monday, May 16, 2011

May 16th 365 challenge


Family Home Evening treats... banana splits :)  Yum.

May 15th 365 challenge


Benjamin holding the drawing of the temple for comparison... looking good!  (Benjamin, too!)

May 14th 365 challenge


Timothy sans curls AND sans stitches.  He still had steri strips for another day, but here's how that cut is healing... no more hole in the head.

May 13th 365 challenge


Dad and older boys at a Scout camp out... Emilie playing with fire and Mom playing with the camera... doesn't bode well for Friday the 13th...

Just kidding.  :)  We're not victims of  triskaidekaphobia here... Emilie wanted to see what it was like to both light her candles she bought at a garage sale AND read like in the 'olden days'.  Go for it, Emilie.  And Mom tested some features on her camera.

May 12th 365 challenge


Samuel said he couldn't remember ever painting before.  So we HAD to pull out all the paints.  We had fun.  Nathanael and Emilie got into it, too.  It was a mess, but good times.  Samuel was reminded about mixing colors.  (Mom!  We don't have orange!)  (Samuel!  How do you make orange?!)  (oh, yeah.)

May 11th 365 challenge


Timothy got his 7 stitches out today... and steri strips put on.  Looking good, boy!  He will probably have a scar, but things are healing nicely.  As we were driving home he made up a super hero called Super Sucker... with the wrapper as a cape.

May 10th 365 challenge


New outfit from Grandma!  My beautiful 11 year old daughter Emilie. 

Not sure what was up with Blogger the last few days, but I gave it a few days to recover before posting anything else!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mother's Day 2011

Mother's Day is a day when I appreciate, more and more each year, why my mother always said she didn't like Mother's Day.  Any gesture seems inadequate to show appreciation for our own mothers (and other moms we know) and all they have done, and anything done for me seems out of place and sometimes mocks me for my failures in the preceding week alone. (or seems inadequate to make up for the things I've dealt with in the past week alone.)

(it's been a long week.)

And now this Mother's Day, when twice already this year my body has rejected another baby, I am left to appreciate my 8 living miracles of the 11 I have conceived in my lifetime, so far.

Michael.  My 14 year old.  Just got new glasses and is giddy over being able to see again.  Can care for his siblings before I even ask him to, which has happened a lot lately with the two miscarriages.  Came into our lives a full month before we expected and has grown spiritually, physically, intellectually, and emotionally in leaps and bounds ever since.  I can't say he's perfect, but he is a son I am proud to call my own.  He is nearly as tall as I am (shush, yes, I know that's not saying a whole lot!) and will pass me up this year.  He has completed his first year of seminary attendance (at least by the time Mother's Day gets here), is working on high school Geometry, AP Biology, writing his own novel(s), getting his Life in Scouts, and many other things that make me smile every day.  He has a great sense of humor and his own sense of fun that he shares with his family.

Benjamin.  Our 12 year old.  Small for his age but catching up quickly.  Our 'easy tan' guy who loves the outdoors and doesn't mind the scratches, bumps and bruises that come with being very active.  Loves being a part of Young Men's and helping in anyway he can.  Loves babies and little ones and can always be counted on to come to their needs, whether they are related to him or not.  Loves the older members of our community at church and at home and seems to sense where a kind word is needed to make someone's day.  He makes friends easily and is a natural leader.  He has a temper but is learning to control it and I can see the mental effort he puts into it when he tries.  He is learning to play the piano and his talents are growing daily.  He came into our lives a month later than we expected (hey, I was hoping for 8 month pregnancies) and has kept us hopping.  I love helping him learn, and watching those leaps of faith... and the 'real' leaps, too, though they give me heart attacks.

Emilie.  Our 11 year old Kentucky girl.  Our surprise princess, only 18 months younger than Benjamin, and he really did think she was the greatest when she was a baby.  Our spunky girl with her own style and way of thinking, she makes us either confused or delighted each and every day.  Always ready to find ways to help those in need, always ready with a new idea that challenges our thinking, and always ready to learn and grow.  She is so excited to become a member of Young Women's next year and move on to new adventures, though she is still thrilled with the ones she is working on now.  Always full of energy, more than I have lately, and always interested in something to read but usually ready to help if she think she's needed and appreciated.  She is becoming a beautiful person, inside and out, and it is both wonderful and frightening to watch.

Nathanael.  8 years old and still figuring out who he is.  He wants to be a big kid but still enjoys being a younger kid and being a total goof off.  Definitely has his own sense of humor he likes to share but isn't always appreciated.  He's our 9 minutes in the hospital birth, definitely wanted to get here quick.  He's our Ohio boy.  Big expressive eyes and just happy to be here.  He's a newly minted Bobcat in Cub Scouts and fresh off his first Pinewood Derby, in which he won a few, lost a few and was again, just happy to be there.  He loves to read and loves to play, loves big kid privileges but not always the responsibilities.  Loves to be outside, loves to be inside, loves to play games, loves to read, loves to build, loves to pretend, loves to joke and laugh, loves to just be a part of it.  Great person to be around if you want a smile on your face.

Samuel.  6 years old and ready for anything.  He wants to do what Nathanael is doing but knows he's got a few years to go.  He's been reading for 2 years and knows all the stuff 2nd graders are supposed to know even though he's supposed to be a kindergartner.  That's ok.  He has other stuff to learn and keep up with.  He loves Harry Potter, Legos, computer games, building, NOT going to bed, NOT doing chores, and playing anywhere, inside, outside, and on the roof if he could get there.   He loves to run.  He was supposed to be born in Pennsylvania (Punxsutawney, no less) but Tom got the sudden job change to Amarillo, so he's a Texan, ya'll.  He doesn't talk much at first but will once he gets to know you.  My shy guy.  I absolutely love his giggle. 

Timothy.  4 going on 5 going on 100.  He can tell you most of the United States and who was born there from our family, or at least something about it.  He loves Missouri and Texas and will go on and on until he has something else he wants to tell you.  Timothy was a late talker but once he found something he wanted to say, watch out... he was telling you numbers, shapes, and letters before he could get a sentence out.  He is full of energy and does NOT want to quit once he starts something he is interested in... which makes Primary a challenge for his parents and leaders alike, but we keep trying.  He is a sweetheart with blonde curly hair that seems to keep surviving family haircuts, but they will probably be cut again soon, only to grow back in a few months.  Our second Texan baby, and first to be born after we bought a house there.  He just started telling me that he loves me.

Christopher.  3 years old and full of fun and life.  He will tell you if you are his friend, and will introduce you to his other friends.  Once you are in, you are good.  He has a great little grin and while you can't always tell what he is saying, it's usually something he's happy about.  He came only 16 months after Timothy and it has been interesting to see how close they are and how much trouble they get into together... he knows a lot of what Timothy knows, but he's not into this whole 'state' thing and prefers to stick with the ABC's and numbers.  Oh, and colors and shapes, too.  He likes to help, but not with what you are doing, with something else.  If you aren't doing something interesting, he will take Liberty and they will find something better to work on.  (uhoh.)  Life is never dull with Christopher around.  Just wait til he gets tall enough to open the back door.  I am his friend, too.  Just be glad you know me.... maybe I can put in a good word for you.

Liberty.  18 months.  She is another surprise princess.  She came to us only 18 months after Christopher (so yes, 3 kids in less than 3 years if you count Timothy turning 3 only 6 days after she was born...)  However, she had to come then to fulfill the 9 years apart sister prophecy... (Emilie's aunts were telling her that sisters only come 9 years apart in our lineage... not true but true in these 3 families... Tom's 2 sisters are 9 years apart... my sister and I are 9 years apart... lo and behold, Emilie was 9 when Liberty was born.)  She flipped us off in the ultrasound.  She orders us around now.  She's not talking yet but lets us know her every whim and desire. Oh, and tells the other people who are here for her entertainment what to do, too.  The 7 other ones who are shorter than we are.  Yeah, those guys.  The funnier ones.  Sigh.  Another little miracle that we are just now getting to know.

I count my blessings daily. (especially when getting into the van... got to make sure they are all there!) I guess that is one thing about Mother's Day I love, as well as the chance to think of all the other mothers in my life I am thankful for, and hope and pray that in some way, I can be a mother like them and can reach others like they have reached me.  Mother's Day may not be so bad after all.

May 9th 365 challenge

Emilie wanted a nightgown for her birthday, and we found a matching one for Liberty.  Those are frogs.  Now I know why Sherri and I wore matching stuff a lot.... :)

Kansas City Missouri temple- May 8th, 2011

Beautiful Mother's Day.  Even though we did not make it to church due to stomach flu amongst the kiddos, we still loaded everyone up to go see the temple.  Looks like more landscaping, more windows, and just a great day to see the temple.