Category Archives: holidays

11 months

This little guy is 11 months today.

Which makes all these thought swirl around in my head. Thoughts like: Where did the time go? It seems like just yesterday. But we’ve be through SO much. Is it just 11 months? 11 months. That leaves one month until his First Birthday. What should I do for his party? I want to have a HUGE celebration. He’s here. We made it. Let’s have a carnival with tons of friends. Or should we just have a sweet family birthday? Or both. Oh, and I don’t care if he’s going to be one. He’s still my baby. My baby. 

So I have no idea what we are doing for his birthday. I’m really leaning toward the carnival. Do you think I can pull it off if I haven’t even started?

Whatever we decide, we are going to celebrate this amazing boy. I think those ear infections are finally clearing up, and he is back to his wonderful self. He’s regained his ferocious appetite, which is good because he lost a substantial amount of weight (for a baby) during his ear infections. He LOVES being right in the middle of whatever his brother and sister are doing. He continues to LOVE the bath and will try to crawl in himself if you don’t put him in when his siblings are bathing. He loves crawl up on Karston’s bed during bedtime routine. He knows his brother, and he loves him. He laughs a lot. He has a great laugh. He is a super fast crawler- so watch the door. He pulls up and walks along the furniture to retrieve whatever it is he wants. He has a long reach. He’s signed “more” a couple of times. He just signed “milk” tonight. He doesn’t need to sign because he usually gets whatever he wants without it. 

I’ll leave you with a quote from Karston. He’s been saying this a lot the last few days.

“Mommy. You’re a princess.”

“Kyrie. You’re a princess.”

“Kanon. You’re awesome.”



Filed under everyday, holidays

photo overview

It’s taking me a little longer to unpack and get the house back in order since I opted to make the kids beach bags instead of clean house before our trip. That, and I have one child with two ear infections and another with on/off fever. They’re really cute bags though. 

We really did have a good trip overall; many good memories were made. However, there were several things that had they not happened could have made our trip more of a vacation. More on that later (and I promise not to tell you in a complaining type of way).

So here’s a few pictures from our trip. I took over 800 photos and wish I took more. I almost always wish I would have taken more.

…..and my very favorite picture from the whole trip

I have a little series of pictures of her running and twirling in the sand that I would love to have printed as one large photo.


Filed under holidays, photography

On vacation

on a beach in Florida with Mark’s side of the family. See you next week!

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5 Years

It’s been 5 years today.

Since we publicly professed our love for each other by vowing to be with one another FOREVER.


5 years!

It seems it was just yesterday, and yet at the same time, it feels like ages ago.

Which, I think, is what a big majority of life is: a balance of extremes.

Except of course our love for one another and for Christ.

There is no balancing that.

It is extreme.

5 years.

It’s been good.

I love you.

Let’s do 5 more!

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Our Trip {Part 1}

Wow, I never thought it would take me this long to get back to the blog. I can’t believe the last “real” post was the potty party, that seems like forever ago! So much has gone on since that post that there is no way I could ever fill you in on everything, but I do want to share some pieces.

When we left Texas a little over a year ago we didn’t know when we’d be back. We thought not until the Mister finishes school at the very earliest. But my little brother was graduating high school…..and our neighbors in Woodway (Waco) are moving overseas and we HAD to see them before they leave. So off we set on a 12 hour drive to the great state of Texas. And after living out of that great state for a year, and loving, loving, loving where we live now, I still have to say that Texas is the best state EVER!

After a VERY long night in the minivan, we made it. Which was only by God’s grace. And then 2 days later, we loaded back into the minivan for a 3 hour trip to Waco for a visit with this lovely family. While Texas is the best state ever, these people are the best neighbors ever! There is no replacing them.

And then one night while in Waco, another family hosted a get together so we could see even more of our friends. It was so. much. fun. We did miss a couple of families, though!

Our time in Waco was bittersweet. It felt as if I had blinked, like no time at all had passed since I had been sitting around that familiar table being served a meal by our sweet neighbor, or talking kids + design + photography + cooking with friends. We fell into step without any stumbles. But then you looked around at the children. And they had grown. And there were new children that we were just meeting for the first time. And then you knew time had passed.

We said goodbye once again to all our life-giving friends in Waco. We had to get back to East Texas to see this handsome graduate!

My little brother is very talented and a very hard worker. He can weld and build just about anything. I’m always coming up with ideas and designs for him to either build me or weld for me, but he just thinks I’m crazy. And I am. But I’m telling you Trey, people would buy the design. Congratulations Trey! We love you!

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The Party

you know- the potty one. Yep, we had the potty party. And we went ALL out. Kyrie needs attention. A lot of attention. She needs to feel very special. (and of course she is very special) So just as I was adding things to “the party” that seemed way over the top and so much like a joke that I was laughing at the whole thing, the more she loved it. And that’s the great thing: as a family you can do over-the-top, ridiculous, goofy, unnecessary, silly things and it doesn’t matter one bit how crazy it is because you all love each other so much that you don’t care how crazy it is. We had goofy fun.

Her “prize” panties for being potty- trained, hanging from the wire art display board in the dining room. She was so excited to get to wear these which made me very excited because for a while I thought I was going to be ironing on Mater and Buzz Lightyear figures to plain white panties. 

Because making the potty chart  reminded me of making signs in cheerleading…..

I had 8 minutes while the dinner was in the oven. I ran down to the basement, used a broken foam brush and my finger, and made this sign. She loved it. And so did all our guests in the 2 weeks following.


The cookie cake that I never thought I would order. 

me: “Yes, potty party, and could you please draw a picture”

16ish year old boy: “Of….a toilet?

me: “Of a pair of panties. A pink pair please.”

boy: “like underwear.

me: “well sort of, but panties”

I should have drawn it for them. Oh well. Kyrie LOVED it.


Can you tell how excited she was? While she was waiting for us to get the cookie cake down (because, you know, it has to go on the highest shelf in the house until it is time to be eaten or it will be devoured in seconds while you’re not looking), she started singing, “Potty Party to me” to the tune of Happy Birthday. Made me smile.


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The Tomb

This weekend is Easter. And while there will be a lot of egg dying, egg hunts, & easter baskets, we as Christians want to focus on celebrating the death and resurrection of Jesus. The book Treasuring God in Our Traditions by Noel Piper (that I gave away not too long ago) really helps you think about how to use the holidays to drive home Truths that you try and teach your children on a daily basis. And that book is exactly where this idea came from. 

These pictures are from last year when we created the tomb. We were on hiatus in Longview during that time, so we just picked up some air dry clay from Wal-Mart. Any homemade play-doh or salt dough recipe would work. 

The idea is to create a hill where you could place a cross, a tomb, and a place for other people to stand. You would recreate the the events of the cross. 

We simply made the tomb. We place Jesus in there on Friday. Then the kids check on Him everyday (multiple times a day) to see if He’s still there. Then on Sunday, before the kids wake up, Mark or I roll the stone away and take Jesus out. And the kids come out and say, “Jesus is Alive.” Instead of making our people or Jesus out of pipe cleaners as recommended, we simply photocopied the images from the kids’ Bible. This ended up being a great project last year as I’m sure it will be again this year. Noel Piper also states that this is a project for smaller children as older children tend to get a giggly over it. And we never want to make the cross a laughing matter. It’s not too late to do this with your children. Let me know if you do. 

On a whole other note, doesn’t Kyrie look like such a baby in these pictures. Ah, the difference a year makes!

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