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I took some pictures of the boys this week.  They are due “school” or annual portraits, AND I was practicing for my newest Life|Stop Photography adventure:-)  Whatever the reason, I LOVE these images, AND these boys:-)  Someday they might just roll their eyes and give me attitude when I ask them to come take pictures, but right now they come and give my SO much personality I am soaking it up!

This guy is FIVE, can you believe it.  He LOVES kindergarten, loves his teacher, and making friends!  He also LOVES his sleep, so getting up for morning kindergarten has proved to be quite the challenge.  He is still a snuggler, and STILL sleeps with doggie EVERY night!  He definitely keeps us laughing, and more than once we have used his name and the word “frat boy” in the same sentence.  He is ALL boy!


This fun loving boy is EIGHT!  Eight, can you imagine!  It goes by WAY to fast!  He is in third grade, still LOVES reading, but says his favorite subject is science.  He is a charmer of teachers and makes new friends fairly easily.  He has definitely entered that age where a little insecurity comes in, but he is also figuring out how to be happy and confident in WHO he is, and WHO he was made to be.  He is also a performer, never hesitates to volunteer to be on stage or say something to the whole class.  He is wise beyond his years, and often shares insight on God and life that makes us pause and think a little deeper.  He is a sweet sweet boy!  I am definitely blessed to be the mama of these two boys!



This guy, well he is 30-something:-)  I am beyond blessed to be his wife.  I still can’t believe what a gift our marriage is, God has definitely molded and formed our relationship.  He encourages, inspires, and remains steadfast through everything.  He is wise beyond his years as well, and he is an AMAZING daddy!  It was such a treat to have him in front of the camera, and when I look at this image, I just see him, to the core. I LOVE being his wife!


If you would like to see more from this session check it out here!


We got word late in the week that we would break ground Monday (yesterday), so…we had a little party:-)  little being the appropriate size for our little living space, or maybe not since kids and adults had to eat in shifts…but then again, MAYBE that is more relaxing.

OK on with it, we had dinner and then headed over to the property to document this BIG milestone. It really is HUGE, all our planning and designing, finally starting to go somewhere, which will eventually become a house! SUPER EXCITING!


Our friend, Lance, made us a commemorative shovel that we all signed, Daniel was SO happy to be able to sign it himself!  That will be a fun remembrance:-)  Now we just have to clear coat the handle!  The girls, liked our girls (the chickens) in fact I am surprised I have any pics of Blondie, our most friendly chicken, being held by anyone but Gigi, as she sort of claimed her as her own this day.


Here we all are scattered…I think only Tom knew we were supposed to be taking a picture;-P


OK, here it is the “shot”, a memory for all time…nice face Holden.


Oh wait THIS one is better…yep life with boys, thats why we moved to the country, so they could take their crazy outside and play all day;-)  Gotta love them!


And of course there had to be some tractor time, I mean the boys were DYING to check them out since they arrived on Friday!


Well that’s a wrap!  It has begun, earth is being moved and soon concrete will be poured, walls will go up, so on and so forth.  I can’t wait to capture ALL the fun!  AND away we GO!


This past weekend marked two years since Ashley’s death.  Two years seems like a long time, but then it seems like it’s impossible she has been gone for two years.  I’ve talked before about the influence she and her family had on my life, I only wished I had told her while she was still here.  I was sure she knew, but I wish I could tell her in my own words. I am comforted in knowing she is with Our Father, and that she knew His love here on this earth, and now she will never be separated from Him.

This weekend for me was filled with examples of God’s personal and unique love for each of us.  It started on Friday night when we gathered for Women’s Group.  I have stepped down from all formal leadership for a season, and that meant stepping down from the Women’s Ministry of our church.  God has already provided women to rise up and take my place which is SO awesome!  But this Friday, my good friend decided to honor my service by asking the women to share some way that I have impacted their life, or a special memory.  I REALLY dislike being the center of attention and I do not take compliments well, so I of course was dreading it…But I can tell you I was blown away with what was shared, I am completely blown away with what God has done through my years in ministry.  Things I didn’t even know about were shared.  Ways God worked when I didn’t even know I was doing anything other than living life.  A woman I don’t really know even shared a dream and scripture that God gave her, which was amazingly timely.  I was overcome with God’s power and willingness to use us.  I felt very loved by our community but even more loved by our God.  It was something I won’t soon forget and I pray I remember to reach out and verbalize to others how God has used them in my life.


The weekend culminated with worship this Sunday at church, we sang “O Praise Him” by David Crowder, its words talk about the amazing praise that is happening in heaven as the angels worship the King.  I am always reminded when we sing songs like this, of those I have known that are now praising God
at His feet day and night for all of time to come, it’s hard to imagine what that will be like.  Then as I snuggled with my 5 year old, we sang the song “How He Loves Us” by David Crowder.  As usual with that song I am overcome by God’s love for us.  The power with which He loves, how much He craves us, it overwhelming… especially when we often treat that love like it means next to nothing.  But as I sat there my son’s head buried in my chest rubbing his back, I thought of again how much more than I love my son, does our heavenly Father love us? How He tells us to come to Him ALL who are weary and burdened, I see it as our GREAT GOD calling us to Him saying put your head in my chest, snuggle in and I will wrap you in my love, take away your sorrows, renew your strength.  It really is awesome to think about, I am SO glad God gave me perspective to see this, this weekend.  To see His work in and through me, instead of just doubting the words of others. To look at my son who refuses to go to Sunday school and then proceeds to get squirmy and ask questions all through church, and to see in him a chance to see and experience a small glimpse of the depth of God’s love for EACH one of us. We are all precious to Him, He wants us all to come to Him and receive the love that He offers.  I pray that each of you reading this knows of His great love for you.  It’s life changing!


Are you busy? Has meal planning fallen behind?  I know it has here!  That’s why I was SO excited to find Busy Girl Meal Plans, you can also find them on Facebook!  If you love to cook, but find that you just don’t have time during the week this plan might be for you.  They focus on easy meals during the week and more gourmet faire on the weekends:-)  When we have more time to get all fancy.

True to form, I use this plan as a starting point, but so far everything I have tried has been a hit with my family, and I have been able to incorporate my haul from the garden into the meals.  I can’t wait for Septembers plan to come out, which will include weekly shopping lists!  I love that I can make real food for my family on the weekdays and still have time to get my work done;-)  I haven’t really been photographing food in our small house, except with my phone.  BUT hopefully soon I will be back with beautiful, worth drooling over food images:-)  In the meantime, hear are a couple from my instagram feed!

These beautiful peppers came from my garden.  Aren’t they beautiful?  I actually made PHILLY CHEESESTEAK CALZONES:-)  We had some extra homemade pizza dough, and that way I didn’t even have to head to the store! They were SO yummy!



For this I did make the pulled pork sliders, again we had some rolls left over, SO perfect for small sandwiches.  I ate this sans roll with some of my homemade sauerkraut, OH MY yummy!

mealsblog__2So if you have been lamenting dinner lately, or given up and taken the take out route, check this plan out!  It’s free and yummy!  AND sign up soon, as the September plan is ALMOST out;-)  You don’t want to miss a day…haha, though if you know me, I don’t ALWAYS follow this plan, but I LOVE LOVE the starting point for me.  After all, I NEVER make the same meal twice according to my family:-)



The day was here, I had been excited, anxious, and dreading it all at once.  School was starting.  And that means everyone is a YEAR older, AND my BABY was going to go to Kindergarten, 5 days a week.  Every emotion surfaced.  I was anxious for how he would do.  He is our hardest to get to try new classrooms, he is still definitely a mama’s boy.  We went to meet the teacher the day before, and he was fine with holden in there, and he eventually warmed up enough to talk to the teacher.  It was NOTHING like Holden’s meet the teacher.  But, he was SO excited on the days leading up to school, I got caught up in the excitement.  Everybody woke up early, got dressed quickly and had everything packed EARLY.

THIS is the sweetest thing ever…Holden reading to Daniel. He is not always willing to do it, often complaining that reading out loud hurts his throat.  But today he was TOTALLY willing.


Of course we got the obligatory First Day of School pics, some alone, and some together.  And then we headed off to school.

FirstDayBlog_3FirstDayBlog_2FirstDayBlog_1Daniel shot out of the car, and ran down to the classroom, BUT as soon as he came to the door, he backed away, and dug his feet in.  I tried to talk to him, he was having none of it.  So the teacher pried him off of me, and I left, tears running down my face.  Holden wanted to know why I was sad, so I explained to him how hard it was to leave your child when they were sad even though you knew they would be very happy once they were in the classroom.

Daniel’s class starts at 8:15 and Holden can’t be on campus until 8:30, which means I get at least 15 minutes with my oldest.   I am soaking up the time with him.  We have had some fun conversations already!  When the bell rang we went to his class, and he was a little anxious when he realized that who he thought was his teacher wasn’t in fact his teacher, but true to his nature he went right in and had a GREAT day.

Both boys had fun first days, and although Daniel said he was excited to go the next, he had the same reaction at the door the next day, and the next.  BUT we are now a couple weeks in, and he just told me, “you can just stay in the car, you don’t have to walk me.”  To which of course I said, “No Way!”, but he is happy to kiss me and say goodbye at the classroom door and go right in.

I have already signed up to be in the boys classrooms regularly and I am looking forward to another GREAT year!

  • August 28, 2014 - 6:47 pm

    Jo little - Omgosh so reminiscent of my girls early years . My Hannah pried from me and me crying all morning . Now a sophomore in HS it passes fast . So glad Daniel is adjusting ❤️ReplyCancel