Wednesday, June 27, 2012

June at our house

I surveyed my messy house this evening after the kids went to bed and commented to Joel "How did this happen? It was perfect when I woke up this morning! It would have stayed that way too, if I didn't have any kids"
He smiled and said "Yes, but then we wouldn't have any kids!"
Hmm.....Good point. I'll take the kids over a clean house any day ;)

So, what have we and our five messy kids been up to lately?

Well, we had a 'make your own personal pizza' night last Friday (Cosette was at my Grandma's having a fun time, so she's not in these next few pictures)

Noah needed a little, with patting his dough out ;)

Joel's pizza

My pizza. Mine looks better, right? ;)

In other interesting news, Eli got out of the shower the other day and I noticed he had a little soap left in his ear. I sent him back into the shower to rinse it out. When I came back to check on him again, this is what I found. Um, funny, Eli!

And lastly, the most important happening this month is some special visitors! My Dad and Suzanne are in to visit for a few weeks, and our family was SO happy to see them again. (They live across the had been 10 months....think Cosette looks a little excited to see her Grandpa? :) I'm sure there will be more pictures of their visit in the next couple of weeks!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Say hello to summer

Summer time should be all about.....

Stickers, crayons, and master piece creations

Sitting on the back steps with Grandpa, waiting for the steaks to finish grilling

Trying on new bathing suits

Morning walks with ice cream as the end result---and before lunch too ;)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Grocery Shopping Tales

Somehow, today I ended up going grocery shopping on the hottest day so far of the summer. It must have been close to 100. Fortunately, I only had Reagan with me. The other kids were much happier playing at a friends house :)

So, Reagan and I start off down the looooooong parking lot at WalMart. I grabbed a cart at the outside cart holder and realized that WalMart has very rudely dis-continued their carts with baby seats attached. Just like they discontinued their maternity section in the store. Seriously? Apparently, nobody is pregnant or having babies anymore....

Anyhow, I decided to just stick Reagan's whole car-seat down into the shopping cart instead. As I was maneuvering  the seat into the cart, a lady at a near-by car looked at me sympathetically and said "They just don't give new mom's enough arms, do they?" I smiled and shook my head no, but on the inside I was thinking "Lady, if you think I'm lacking arms NOW, you should see me on a normal day with four other kids along!" But I didn't say that. I was kind of enjoying the 'Young new mom with first baby' feel again, even if it wasn't true. With five kids in my house and my 30th birthday happening this year, I don't get that feeling much anymore!

So, I start pushing my cart around, grabbing groceries, quite pleased with myself for managing to stack everything around Reagan's seat. But, 'pride goes before a fall', because I soon managed to let a jar of spaghetti sauce slip out of the cart and land *crash* on the floor, sending spaghetti sauce flying everywhere, including all over me. It was at that point that I was very glad for a purse full of baby wipes. It kind of reminded me of the time when I was a teenager and dropped an entire beautiful strawberry pie on the floor upside down. But I degress..........

A kind lady passing by offered to send her son to find somebody to clean it up. Bless those people who take just an extra minute and a little extra effort to help out somebody else!

I looked at my list and realized that I couldn't find apple butter or pesto. I stopped a nearby worker, who happily directed me toward the apple butter, but looked a little confused at the pesto request. "Um, what's that? Is that a liquid?"

A liquid? Ewww!! I really had to laugh inside then, imagining chugging down a glass full of pesto ;)

So, 1:00 today found me headed out of WalMart, pushing a cart FULL of groceries with one hand and carrying Reagan's carseat with the other. And suddenly, I was glad for all those post-natal exercises I've been doing, or I probably wouldn't have accomplished that feat! And I was also suddenly very grateful that I didn't have all five kids with me, or I would have just had to officially declare myself looney ;)

Grocery shopping trips, they never cease to offer amusement to my life :)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

The 'no-hawk', 2nd edition :)

Remember Eli's famous self- haircut from a couple of years ago that we called the 'no-hawk?'

Well, Noah decided to give it a try today. Only, I think we'll call his the 'side-hawk' :)

Fortunately, this little man isn't big enough to try cutting his own hair yet. But I DO love how curly it gets right out of the bath tub :)

Thursday, June 14, 2012

REAL life

It occurred to me that sometimes, I may  be accomplishing the opposite on this blog from what I intend. My dream is that those who come here would be encouraged, uplifted, given a smile, etc.

However, in order to do that, I have to capture the beautiful moments of my day. The pictures that you see are mostly children smiling, having a good time, etc. I doubt that it would be much of an encouragement to you to see dirty diapers, sibling arguments, huge piles of dirty laundry, or my messy hair when I wake up in the morning ;)

But, while intended for an encouragement, some of you may start thinking "Gee, that sure beats sitting in this office all day! I wish I had HER life!"  I know this happens----I've been guilty of it myself. Seeing someones else's life on someone else's blog and suddenly becoming disillusioned ( is that a word?) with my own.

So just know that, while I'm sharing the beauty of our days with you, 'real life' is happening in between  all the other stuff :) For instance, I might post a picture of a yummy, scrumptious looking casserole I made for dinner, but you don't see the burned potatoes sitting at the other end of the table, hehe ;)

And I love that about blogging----it helps me to capture the 'good moments', the beauty, the people and things I'm thankful for, and focus on them. Then, I can thank God for pulling me through the harder times!

So, I pray that you are encouraged when you come here to go and actively seek out the beauty in your own life and days!

With that said, here are some 'beautiful' moments from our day today.

Wait? Did I say beautiful? I think I meant scary....or weird....or.... what ARE they doing?? ;)

Look at me, mom!

I know, I know, it's sideways. For the life of me I couldn't figure out how to flip it---but it was too cute not to post :)

What one brother won't do to make another brother laugh!

Oh, and just so you know that real life does happen here----this was my kitchen counter after dinner the other night. After I had filled and started the dish-washer. After I had already washed at least three sink loads that day. The never ending dish pile........real life! :)

Monday, June 11, 2012


It seems like there is always talk among mothers about how we want to 'make every moment count', 'enjoy the little years', 'spend time with our kids', etc, etc. Yet every day finds us too 'busy' with other stuff to enjoy our children.

Well, I decided to make a real effort this summer to end that. I'm not just going to 'think' about playing with my kids more---I'm going to do it!

So, this morning, we ALL headed outside. Reagan even went out for a little Vitamin D :) I watched Leanna ride her little tricycle, and threw the frisbee around with the boys.

Then, Cosette and I got the wiffle ball set (is that what it's called??) out, and apparently that looked like so much fun that Eli soon wanted to join in.

(sorry for the white mark in the middle of the pictures--I think my camera had a smudge on it! :/ 

I also stole this picture from my husband's facebook page. This was Noah swimming at Grandpa and Grandma's last night. We were laughing because his initials on his water mask make him look like he's from North Carolina :)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

A little Q and A session :)

Sometimes I'm tempted to start my own clothing line, just for me. It would be T-shirts that I wear whenever I'm out in public. They would say things like "I'm hard of hearing, please don't be offended if I don't hear you calling me from across the room."   " Speak up. I can't hear you. No, Speak WAY up"   "I'm not ignoring you, I just can't hear you"

This has been a life-long difficulty for me. People have found me rude, stuck up, or arrogant because I was 'ignoring' them---when in reality, I just didn't hear them saying my name in a room full of noisy people.

I used to be pretty ashamed about my hearing loss, trying not to let people know. But, since I've married Joel, I've finally discovered that life is just a whole lot easier when people KNOW you don't hear well. I now try to tell people as soon as I meet them about my hearing issues, so they know right off.

However, I must be slacking because a lady in church today told me she was 'so relieved when someone told me about your hearing loss---I thought you were ignoring me a couple times!"  I thought most people in church knew---apparently not.

*sigh* I'm not a rude person, really, my ears just don't work right!

So, in an effort to help you all be more ''hearing impaired aware" (kind of like 'cancer awareness month', or something), I'm going to do a little Q and A session here with myself to answer questions that I know so many of you have.

1. How long have you been hearing impaired? Well, we're not 100% certain, but we're pretty sure it's been since I was a little girl.

2. What happened to your hearing? I was probably just born this way---something didn't 'form' right in my ear. I didn't listen to loud music or get ear infections or take drugs or anything like that. I was just born this way.

3. Do your kids have hearing loss? No, my hearing loss is not a genetic thing. All my kids have tested with perfect hearing, thank you Jesus!

4. Do you read lips? Not primarily. If I can't hear you talking, then I don't know what you're saying. But if I can hear your voice too, then watching your mouth helps me to 'catch' more of what you're saying.  So don't be offended if I watch your mouth when we're talking instead of your eyes.

5. Did you have a cochlear implant? No, although I'm asked this a lot. My hearing loss is not severe enough for that. I simply wear good digital hearing aids.

6. Will you be offended if I speak loudly? NO, No, No, No!! PLEASE, speak up! Move your lips when you talk! Look at me instead of the ground! And please, don't do what my kids do and try whispering to me in church or another public area---it will simply sound like gibber-gabbish in my ear.

A few other thoughts

1. Hearing loss is not as uncommon as you may think. Doctors are finding out now that more babies are born with hearing impairment than they originally thought.

2. Hearing Loss is no different than needing eye glasses. It just so happens that people who have hearing loss are more noticeable to the population in general because it effects conversations and such.  I still have my brain perfectly intact---I'm not stupid, just hard of hearing---so please, don't whisper about me or about anything in front of me. Just because I can't hear you doesn't mean that I won't realize you're whispering about something!

3. If we're in a room full of people and you notice that I've answered a question wrong because of not hearing it properly, please feel free to correct me or inform the other person---I really don't want to eat  something gross at a restaurant because I ordered wrong ;)

4. And finally, please be patient with me. I KNOW it's hard to talk to me sometimes, especially in a noisy place, but I'm honestly doing my best. I have no desire to be shut out of life because everybody's too timid or annoyed to talk to me.

We ALL have problems---whether they're health issues, relational issues, emotional issues, etc---we're all human and we ALL need Jesus! Learning to be 'okay' with who I am, hearing loss and all, has helped me to move forward in life and conquer this difficulty as best as I can. I will try to be patient, loving and helpful in whatever you are going through, and I'm thankful for the people who are understanding of my hearing issues as well :)

Friday, June 08, 2012

I have not had time lately to get on here and post much. And I think that's actually been a good thing, because it's caused me to stop and reflect a little bit on WHY I blog in the first place.

I don't have the way with words and blessing people like Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience.  I don't have incredible recipes to share like Our Best Bites. I don't have political and theological discussions to get your brain thinking like my brother in law Jesse. I don't have a huge following like Enjoying the Small Things

But you know what? I've determined that that's okay. This blog is about US. Even if nobody but me ever read it ever again, I think I would keep writing here. Writing, for me, is a great mental 'outlet'. Sometimes, after I see my frustrated words written for a blog, I realize how silly I'm being, and I hit the 'delete' button :) Sometimes, I look back over old pictures of the kids and realize how blessed I am. Sometimes, it's a way for me to sort through mixed up feelings or thoughts in my brain, or to share what God's been doing in my life lately. Sometimes, I just enjoy re-reading the funny stories about my kids.

It's been almost six years now that I've been 'blogging', and I've decided that I don't intend to stop, at least not any time soon :) While there are five kids running around my house, there will always be stuff to share and laugh at :)

I'm hoping to get back on a more regular posting schedule here pretty soon. Maybe I'll start out with a few days of nothing but pictures, we'll see :)

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Baby Asleep? Check

Hot wings in the oven? Check

Root Beer with ice? Check

Season 6, Episode 11 of Monk ready to go? Check

When you have five kids, you have to be creative with your date nights. So what if we have to wait until after Joel gets home from the elder's meeting and all five kids are asleep, and I have a yucky head cold? We'll still have fun :)


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