Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Helping Trip

We left in a rush when we got a call that my Dad had been taken by ambulance to hospital and would be having open heart, triple bypass surgery soon. John and the boys (plus Kaiser) stayed at my parents' home to care for the garden and their little dog, while I stayed in Toronto with my Mom so we could be with Dad every day before, during and after surgery.


My Mom with the boys and me at a rest stop


Hanging out in isolation 


John and the boys drove to visit me at the hospital for my birthday. ❤️


I got to see my sister! She and her husband also opened up their home to John and the boys while I was away and they all had a great visits each evening. 


The guys took a day trip to Bon Echo Park.

My Dad prefers not to have hospital pictures online but, after over two weeks in the hospital, he was able to go home with a wonderfully working heart! He is still in recovery mode but good times are ahead. 


Here he is with my Mom. ❤️



Sunday, June 26, 2016

Pony Summer



Our family likes animals. We have lots in our home and sometimes we take care of the neighbor's too. 
This week we've been taking care of some ponies and I can see that Nathan is still amazing with them, like he was as a pre-schooler. He just has a quiet way with them and they respond. I love to watch it happen. 


Here he is at maybe age four....


Sam seems to really like them too.






It's beautiful. 

Friday, June 17, 2016

Farming



John grew up farming and now is able to pass that on to our kiddos. He includes the boys as much as possible with the soy bean crop and all it entails. He is such a good Dad! ❤️




Thursday, June 2, 2016

Family Hike


We went hiking on the New River Trail in VA. It seems like something good happens when we go to the woods, at least for me anyway. We leave all screens behind and just enjoy nature and each other's company. 


We took time for snacks and pictures, of course. John caught this crazy picture of Kaiser. 


We hiked maybe 5-6 miles and Sam happily walked every step all on his own. He has grown so much stronger this past year.


Nathan, with Finn & Kaiser, post-hike


Sometimes the boys don't want to stop & pose for pics. I insist, but they respond with silly expressions! I think they're cute anyway. 


Daddy, the leader of the pack, with oldest and youngest. 



Tuesday, April 5, 2016

14


My beautiful boy, my first born, turned 14 yesterday! He is growing up so quickly and, of course, we are proud of him. Mark loves the outdoors...hiking, canoeing, kayaking, camping, gardening...loves all of it. He has a determined personality and is a natural leader. He is great at working with our dogs that need a firmer hand.


I took this picture yesterday with our new foster GSD, Cam.


Older shot


❤️❤️❤️❤️

Thursday, March 31, 2016

March

This was a busy month for us and we packed in some fun things like a trip to the beach for a soccer tourney (Luke's team won the whole thing! Whoot! Whoot!) as well as a "Boys Only Trip" to ND for John and our three oldest sons. We also have been sick, so lots of lying around and temperature-taking has also happened. 

Oh, it's easier to just use pictures....




The guys went to ND to help celebrate John's Dad's 80th b day. That's him with some, but not all, of his Grandkids! John tries to take a "Guy Trip" with the boys once a year or so and I think it's excellent. I love that they are getting that time together. 




Our new foster dog is Cam. He has been through a lot of tough things in his life so we are taking time to help him relax and to get to know him well so we can help match him to the right home. 






Luke and Sam and I went out on Easter Saturday to spread some cheer with some simple & yummy gifts and invitations to come out for an Easter church service. We wanted people to know that they were welcome and wanted and that Easter was for them too, and of course, that they are loved. 💗 



Sam lost another tooth! He is so cute with two missing on top and one on the bottom.
His pre-school went to an egg hunt hosted by a senior's home. Isn't that a wonderful idea to bring the Seniors and the Littles together? 




I found this print and adore it! I want it on my wall! It's a good question too, right?
So, what do I want to do with my wild and precious life? I think making a list is a great exercise and it helps to make it specific, I think. How about you? 

I want to...

Take the time to play with play dough with my youngest (I find it hard to stop and just play!) 
Listen carefully as my oldest explains his Legos
Bring a meal to a family that is hurting
Take in sick, scared and scarred foster dogs
Walk barefoot in sand...often! 
Sew! Create art! Be adventourous with decorating my home.
Listen for the still, small voice of my precious Creator (no mysticism here...I mean Jesus! 💗)
Rest when I need to (regardless of what a mess the house is)
Care about others even if it hurts (it will) 
Listen to different points of view
Keep my sense of humor
Eat delicious food
Never, never, never stop loving and taking action to relieve suffering whenever and however I can
Be brave
Speak the truth even if my voice shakes
Be kind
Use fun polish colors with sparkles on my nails
See, really see people
Never forget that life doesn't have to be perfect to be wonderful.
❤️ 


Tuesday, March 1, 2016

No Time To Match Socks!




So, we have been doing more important things than sock matching! Our house may be a mess but we are living all-out the best way we know how. 


Sam lost a tooth! He was so excited because he pulled it out all by himself with lots of "helpful" coaching from his older brothers. 




We are taking down our barn. It's an amazing 70+ year old mule barn with so much character, the kind of place I would have adored to play in as a child. It's not on our property though, so we are moving it piece by piece. We plan to rebuild a smaller version and are selling some of the wood as part of our adoption fund raising. Yep, we are prayerfully prepping to adopt again! 



We play a lot. It's what little boys do! 


We got a new foster pup. Sugar is as sweet as her name implies and she is going to her amazing forever home this week! I love seeing the transition from often homeless and needy, to safe and healing in foster care, to a really well matched forever home. Redemption...irresistible to me in all it's forms. ❤️

On a less serious note, I want these stickers! 🤓