Friday, June 29, 2012


Caleb and I are blessed to have big loving families. Since Amelia joined the bunch our California family has been making a huge effort to come meet her.
 Last month Caleb's brother sister in law came with their little girl and stayed a week. It was wonderful being able to spend time with them. Amelia was a little challenging that week and I felt bad that they came when things we'ren't running there smoothest. But they were so gracious and we made the most of our time together. Elijah and Vanessa absolutely LOVED Kahlan. They barely let her out of their sight the whole time. 
Unfortunately I didn't pull the camera out until right before they left. I quickly snapped a couple shots before they loaded up. Amelia just woke up and wasn't loving the idea of a photo shoot and Elijah was so excited he could barely sit still, but at least we got something.

Then last week my sister Becky came. We were bummed that her hubby couldn't join her, but the kids had a blast playing with her. She gets so silly with them and makes them laugh till they cry. It was wonderful. 

Our time went by way too fast. I seriously felt like she'd barely gotten here and she was leaving. I can't believe it will be Thanksgiving before I see her again.

I told her one of the thing I wanted to do with her while she was here was make strawberry jam. We planned one day to do it and I told her I'd be over after the kids naps. When I walked in the door I saw this on the counter. 

She'd made three batches of strawberry jam for us. I couldn't believe it. I'll think of her everytime I pull a new container out of the freezer. 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

day to day

My day to day often looks the same. Little things change. I may do laundry one day and meal plan the next, but overall it's a lot of me caring for little  ones and keeping house along the way. 

Even though the daily tasks remain the same my heart doesn't. God is faithful to meet me right where I'm at. He reveals himself to me and sanctifies me among dishes and laundry. I love being around my children. Pouring my time into them, teaching them bible verses, and playing with them is easy. But the other things, changing diapers, potty training, grocery shopping, and giving baths were things I saw as duties. Things I had to accomplish in my day. I didn't necessarily mind doing them, but I didn't see them as blessings. It made it easy for me to complain about them when things weren't going smooth. 

God's been teaching me that the daily tasks are blessings. They are my acts of worship to him. I know it sounds strange to say that changing a diaper is a blessing, but it is. It's a way I can serve my little girls and show them I love them. And if I do it with that kind of attitude, my children will know they are blessings in my life and not burdens. I never want them to think I see them as burdens. I want my kids to know and feel the love I have for them. Caring for them is my joy no matter what that entails.  

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Papou and Yiayia.

Caleb's grandparents came for a visit this past weekend. We were really looking forward to our time together and spent the week preparing for them. We counted down the days with the children and anxiously awaited their arrival. 

When we saw them pull into the driveway the kids started shouting and ran out to greet them. The visit was too short, but we made the most of our time and it was even better than we imagined. 

We hadn't seen them since our move and so this was their first time meeting Amelia. She was all smiles. She loved being hugged and kissed on by her great-grandparents.

 Yiayia read them books and gave them their baths. It was as though the children hadn't spent anytime apart. It was wonderful to watch them together.

On Saturday my parents watched the kids so we could spend some uninterrupted time with them. We enjoyed driving around showing them our new home and had a yummy lunch downtown.

It was sad saying good-bye, but knowing we'll see them the end of July made it a little easier.

We love you Papou and Yiayia and our time together meant so much to us!

Monday, June 25, 2012

let your garden grow.

One of my favorite features of our home is the yard. The people we're renting from put so much effort in planting beautiful flowers, trees, fruits, and herbs. 
Because it's a rental I've only put flowers in pots and have some hanging plants. I didn't want to plant things we couldn't take with us someday. But they have enough for me to take care of without me adding to it.

Roses and hydrangeas are some of my favorite.

My great-grandmother and I used to work in her garden. I'd stay close by her side as we planted and weeded. Then she'd let me pick the roses and make arrangements with them. I love thinking of her as I put on my gardening gloves and get dirty. Sometimes it feels like I'm back there working next to her again. 

I smell the roses everytime I pass by and love staring out my front window at them. I can't look at them without seeing God. He reveals himself through his creation. I see the many different colors and types of plants and am amazed at what a creative God we serve. 
It's also impossible for me not to think of him as I care for the plants and pull the weeds. I see the need for me to care for my own spiritual life much in the same way I do my garden. It needs daily attention, watering, and pruning to stay looking beautiful. I enjoy the feeling of working with my hands and seeing a job accomplished.
We even have a bunch of mini strawberries. The kids and I love to eat them while we're working in the yard.

 I've loved learning different plants and how to care for them. 

I frequently have the children knocking on the screen door bringing me flowers they picked for me. They know how much I love them and always want me to put them in water no matter how small the stem. 

<bits of splendor monday

Monday, June 11, 2012

another week gone by.

I know that everyone says it. I know that it's a sign I'm getting older. I know that it keeps going by faster, but seriously, wasn't I just getting ready to have a baby? I have no idea how we're already in June. 
I planned a week of being outdoors last week, but if you're familar with the Northwest, you know the weather is always unpredictable. I actually kind of like it. We've had hot sunny days, cold rainy days, thunder and lighting storms, and even hail with snow in the mountains. 
Last week decided to be stormy. A cold front blew in and brought some crazy windstorms. We were sitting down for dinner and I was telling Caleb I wanted to take the kids to the park, by the end of my sentence the weather changed and all the branches were breaking off our tree. 

Instead we spent the week camping out in the living room. We popped popcorn, watched movies, roasted marshmellows, and played legos. 

Now it looks like we're back to sunny weather. Hopefully this week will be spent outside. 

Friday, June 1, 2012

three months

 I love waking up with you each day, but I don't love that everyday you get a little older. I watch Elijah and Vanessa and know in no time at all you won't be my little baby. 
Every bit of you is sweetness. Your precious gentle nature has captured daddy and me. It's amazing a little baby that takes so much physical work is actually energizing. You refresh me each day and have made me love being a mommy more than I thought possible. 
You're God's special blessing to our family. We love you very much.

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