Friday, November 20, 2009


Anna, by nature, is a high maintenance little girl.  Not that she is difficult (anymore!), but her personality just somehow seems to take over.  Once she gets going, she seems to run the show. I love that about her.  However, my heart lately had been longing for some uninterrupted time with my more laid back little lady who somehow seems to get less of me than her sister.  When an opportunity came up for Abigail and I to go on a mother/daughter retreat, I didn't blink twice.  We signed up and anxiously waited for Nov. 14th to arrive!  

After the initial disappointment of not getting to ride down to Grapeland, TX with some friends, she and I both got very excited about riding with just each other.  We mostly listened to Caddie Woodlawn, a must read by the way, and chatted here and there about how excited we were to be spending this time together.  

As we drove, I remembered that just a few weeks before, David had been out of town for several nights.  In an attempt to be more fun, I copied my friend Ami and let each girl stay up late and sleep with me one night.  The night before Abigail's turn, I asked her what was her favorite day ever and her answer was, "Tomorrow, because I get to hang out with only you all night."  Wow.  I had had no idea how much it meant to her.  As I thought about that, I also thought about how much a weekend like this would mean to any little girl.  To know that her mom set aside that time, just for her.  I think it was something Abigail (and I!) will always remember.

We played by the lake...

We sat by the campfire...

We shot a 22...

(We even hit our targets!)

We climbed a rock wall (Abigail made it all the way to the top!)

We went horseback riding...

We did a little archery...

We made yummy candied apples...well I did, anyway.  
Abigail was afraid they would be "too sweet".

We stayed up late with friends.
We went on the infamous "giant swing" which I talked Abigail into letting them swing us as high as it would go.  Oops.  Once they let us go I heard, "I do not like this.  I think I am going to throw up!"  I, of course, felt terrible.  The lady in charge happened to stop by to take pictures and felt so bad for Abigail that she said she could have a free light up necklace from the General Store.  The tears quickly dried up.  Very quickly, actually!

We had sessions in the chapel where we learned songs, saw funny puppets, and learned Bible lessons.

We loved spending time with some sweet friends, and making a couple new ones as well.  It was especially fun, for me, to see everyone (moms included!) all giddy & giggly as we stayed up late chatting that first night.

All too soon, it was time to head home.  As we drove and finished listening to Caddie Woodlawn, we decided that something was missing.  As much fun as we had (and we had A LOT!) we decided that next year, we'll invite Anna!

Monday, August 31, 2009

What you do when you're 5 and you snag your mom's camera:

1.  You wake your dad up from his nap.

2.  You find your big sister, always happy to smile for the camera, drawing under the school table.

3.  Finally, you take a few self-portraits.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Happy Birthday to My Man

I love that you love to travel and take us fun places
I love your corny jokes
I love that you seriously believe you started the following trends when you were in junior high...roller blading, Tommy Hilfiger, (and others I can't remember)
I love your bald head
I love that you can cheer me up and make me laugh even when I seem determined to stay a grouch (Though I may not know I love this at the time!)
I love that I know things about you that no one else does
I love your soft heart not only towards the girls and I, but especially toward the Lord
I love that you work hard to provide for us so that I can stay home with the girls
I love your weird eating habits (Okay, so maybe not, but I still love you!)
I love watching you and the girls get silly
I love having you as the leader of our family and knowing that you pray for us every day
I love that we have been married for 10 years!
I love that you are 33
I love you
Happy Birthday.  Mmmuuuahh!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Now that I have two readers...

...lunch has gotten a lot quieter around here!

(And even the dolls are enjoying some good books!)

Monday, July 13, 2009

Summer Update

Per a friend's request (Thanks, Michelle, I needed that!) I am doing a little blogging today.  Nothing exciting, just thought I'd share a small sample of what we've been up to:

Feeding the birds at the zoo with B-Pa (and enjoying
his Christmas gift of Zoo passes!)

Cookouts with friends (and this one was even complete with horseback rides!  Anna's first!)

The girls' dance recital.  Anna was a butterfly and Abigail was a flamingo.  
Sadly, this is the best picture I got.

Abigail's piano recital.  She had a stellar first year of lessons and finished out with 4 blue ribbons (for playing in front of judges at Arlington music festivals), a medal (for getting a 99 on her theory test, which she took in a college classroom!) and a trophy!  Next year, Anna will jump on the piano bandwagon.

Plus lots of swimming, Vacation Bible School, tending to our first garden (which has been quite a learning experience!), and just having fun!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


This morning as I woke up to mounds of laundry, dishes I hadn't finished last night, unfinished projects, and lots of clutter, I found myself wondering what in the world possessed me to homeschool.  I started mourning the 7 hours a day that I'd have totally to myself to clean, craft, organize, etc.  I knew that deep down (very deep this morning!) I loved what I did, but I just didn't feel it.  

After we had done most of our desk work, we snuggled up on the couch for our reading.  I had been reading Toliver's Secret to Abigail because it correlated with where we were in history right now, and yesterday, Anna decided she wanted to sit in on the reading.  She quickly got sucked into the story and and wanted to join us again today.  We got to the climax of the story and I knew I had to put the book down so that we could have lunch, and sadly, get dressed(!) before the girls had sewing class.  I tried to put the book down, but I had BOTH girls begging for "one more chapter"!  This is not uncommon from Abigail, but to have both girls desperately wanting me to read just a little more completely melted my heart and was such a confirmation that, messes and all, homeschooling is totally worth it.  

I love that I get to be here with them when they have those moments where things suddenly "click".  I love that I get to see their proud little faces as they tell their daddy about what they learned in school that day.  I love that they are exposed to well-written literature and that I can use what we read to foster Godly character in them.  I love that the Lord has put homeschooling on my heart.  I love that He gave me such a clear reminder that I am in His will and that despite the fact that I sometimes doubt my ability homeschool, He gives me encouragement like this to keep me going.  God is good!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

And Now, the Pictures!

Our traditional family picture in front of the National Park sign.  (A tradition started long ago by my mom - there are countless pictures of my brothers and sisters and I that look just like this!)


First ride - Dumbo!


Abigail and Tinkerbell (Anna declined to have her picture taken as well.)

The girls and Aerial (I thought it was funny how Abigail has been telling me for months now that she's "just not that into princesses anymore" but as soon as we started seeing the princesses, she quickly forgot and enjoyed them all!)

Beach near Hearst Castle

Stinson Beach

Aunt Amanda's convertible

Lunch with Claire

Grand Canyon

Told you I was a sucker for these shots!

The End!