"Do not yield to discouragement in the face of difficulties and do not abandon yourselves to false solutions which often seem the easiest way to overcome problems. Do not be afraid to make a commitment, to face hard work and sacrifice, to choose the paths that demand fidelity and constancy, humility and dedication. Be confident in your youth and its profound desires for happiness, truth, beauty and genuine love! Live fully this time in your life so rich and so full of enthusiasm."
"Let us look with greater hope to the future; let us encourage one another on our journey."
~ Papa Benedict XVI

Wednesday, June 24

If I've Learned One Thing from Our Kids....

it's you don't need fancy clothes to play (or exercise.)

So all you adults out there waiting to start running, riding, whatever while you find the perfect outfit, shoes, etc ...STOP.  Get out there and go!

Our kids run (as in 'go for a run') in regular shorts and t-shirts ... you can too!

At first i laughed to myself - those silly kids.  Then i realized that it actually made sense.  While we adults wait - wait for the perfect time, the perfect outfit, the perfect equipment - kids just go.  They run, they play, they scooter, they play baseball, soccer.   There is no reason not too.   There is no. reason. not. too.  

So the next time someone asks if you'd like to go for a run, or play ball, say yes!  And forget the Fancy Pants!  ;)

Monday, June 22

A Rose by Any Other Name.....

The other day our little Butterfly was lamenting the fact she did not have a treasure box.  Her big sister has 3, and why does she not have one of her own.

We talked about M's boxes.  They are 3 very different containers, but all have one thing in common... they all have lids.  The clear one has a lock, as does the blue one that is large enough to hold only the sea shell.  The third one is all bright colors and sparkly decorations.  They are all 3 very different, and yet they are the same.  They hold treasures.

We all are like those boxes.  We are all very different, though in some ways similar.  We all hold a treasure, and gifts.  Life is so precious, and the gifts and talents we each have are truly gifts. Do you share them?  Or do you hide them away?

I asked Cat where she keeps her treasures.  She replied "in a box in my drawer."  So you do have a treasure box!  "no," she says sadly "... that's my messy box. It has no lid."

Thursday, June 11

"You Ruined My Plan!"

Our three year old cracks me up.  I don't know about anyone else, but i think this guy has comedic timing written all over him.  And yet, from the eyes of this three year old, it's all completely serious.
Today i ruined his plan.

In that three year old, the kid lying in the middle of the kitchen crying while stating the above, i see a bit of all of us.

Today i made phone calls. Calls about putting gutters on the house. Simple enough. But suddenly we had a guy on his way out here - 'be there in an hour."  What!?!?!? That was not my plan.  Our quiet, somewhat lazy morning now involved me running through the house yelling "i'm jumping through the shower!  keep doing your school work!"   After that the younger kids and i went outside to wait.  Its 90 degrees out....and someone decided they needed to plant something. In tiny pots. So there we are, with the three year old crying because he wanted water in his bowl and not on the dirt pellet, trying to moisten dirt, and plant microscopic (so it seemed) seeds.  Thank you dear gift-giver... there are enough seeds to lose and yet still have some to plant.  Still no gutter guy.

Next the three year old decided to create 'a course' for his big wheel to be driven through ... with 4 orange soccer cones, spaced about 3 inches apart.  I, being the good mom that i am, tried to help by spacing them out better.  Not his plan... so i collected them and placed them next to him on the ground.  He actually said thank you, through the tears.  He can do it, but his plan is different than mine - that's ok.

The gutter guy finally showed up, and there we are, kids, toys, bikes, 90 degree weather. Beautiful.
And as we all know, kids must follow any poor, unsuspecting workman around the house (in or out,) just because.  Thankfully, they could watch while they rolled themselves down the drive way in the wagon.  Then, he went out back.

I am busy standing in the kitchen door trying to get a 'quick' explanation of checks and balances from our 13 yr old while keeping an eye on kids outside... and they all disappear.  The 9 yr old then comes in and asks for a bottle of vinegar.  (if i did not know why i would think him insane.)  The 7 yr old comes in and asks to kill the weeds.  The 3 yr old heads out back, because he has a plan. Time for me to head out back.

Have you ever looked at a group of kids and thought "what the heck?" Yep, that was us.  And then we remembered the blackberry bramble - which of course should be just. about. ready.
The 7 yr old picks some, but won't eat them because she does not like them.  The 3 yr old asks for one because he can't reach them through all the weeds.  The 9 yr old asks me to hold his hand so he can lean out over the gully to get to more ripe ones .... um...no, but thanks for asking.

The gutter guy finished his work and sits on the porch, inviting me 'into his office.' You guessed it!  Everyone joined us.  Probably not anyone's plan!  He went over the stuff, chuckling as he talked. In the background kids are politely interrupting to tell their stories ...stories about broken wrists due to ice, leading to broken leg due to jumping.  Wagon rides because walking on a broken leg does not work, and learning to hop on one foot due to your inability to walk.  Then the 3 yr old shows up with a headphone/microphone set that looks like something from McDonald's drive-thru, saying he wants to play 'Frozen Airplane.'  I'm confused.  'That does not sound like it will end well.'  'It's pretend.' he says.
Gutter guy turns to me and says 'you should write a book, or a blog.  You have all the material, you just need to put it all together.'  He smiles, I smile ... this morning was not as i had planned.
There were other conversations through out all the time he was here - weed killing vinegar, correct color for the gutters, the fact that NC only has 2 seasons... we covered it all.  But the reality is, it was not the plan, but it was better.

We don't always take the time to look back. To see that even though the plan did not go as planned, you were given a gift.  A better plan.
I am grateful for our not-as-planned morning.  I would have done far less with our little ones if i had followed my plan.

As for the ruined plan of the 3 yr old.... i admit it.  I took his oatmeal out of the freezer before he was ready to eat it.

Thursday, July 17



It's been almost a year since i last posted anything.  Holy Smokes!

How about a quick (haha) run down of our year so far? In no particular order ....

 And that's only about half of it .... stay tuned!

Sunday, June 9

The Carnival

Miss Linda Lu is so kind...
she gave us ride tickets for the carnival in town recently!

The Wiggle Worm

it's tough being little...

the 'roller coaster'

yes, she went on it with dad!

The Merry Go Round

Bumper Cars

The shorter crowd watching the fun...

More Bumper Cars

the Roller Coaster again!

deciding what to ride next!

The Wiggle Worm!

Wait!  You only need to be so high to ride ALONE...

(He did NOT want to get off!)

Practicing for Driver's Ed?

Big brother was the tallest person able to ride this one!

He actually cried when we took him off this one!

Always looking for the camera!

One more run on the Bumper Cars
(this one is always a favorite with us!)

AND Round Up

I told him i went on it with him last time (State Fair) ...
so he needed to find a new sucker willing soul to ride with him this time 

That would be Dad...
can you see them?

 Thank you Linda!  We all had a great time!