Friday, May 26, 2017

Maps, Planning, Adventures

This summer we have been planning a EPIC (as my son would say) trip
we plan to drive the Blue Ridge Parkway to Washington DC and then to travel the East Coast back home.

we are in the planning stage of the first part of the trip, the Blue Ridge Parkway
I took to Facebook asking for suggestions on where to stop along the way and got a ton of great ideas.
here is the list that we were given. we will pull from these suggestions when we decide what and were we want to do and go off of the parkway.

In North Carolina:
Chimney Rock
Biltmore
 Linville (Gorge Falls Caverns)
 Great Smoky Mt Railroad
 Tweetsie Railroad
 Mt. Mitchell
-The Land of Oz in Beech Mountain


In Virginia:
Floyd,VA the Floyd Country Store
Roanoke-museums for kids
Catawba dinner at the Home Placer
  hiking up to McAfee Knob
  the Peaks of Otter
  hike up Sharp Top mountain
  Skyline Drive, hike Humpback Rock
such great suggestions
how to narrow it down is beyond me but i am sure we will be able to
planning on where to stay and then i will tackle Washington DC

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Last day of School

i love seeing how much they grow over the 10 months that they are in school.
it always amazed me 

First day of school

last "FULL" day of school

 first day of school

last "FULL" day of school

i am so proud of these two. they both had their own struggles throughout this year but have overcome and done so great. we are super excited for the amazing summer we have ahead of us. i now have a 4th and 2nd grader. that seems nearly impossible.

here are a few other lasts celebrated through the years

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Book Launch post 3

there is so much in this book that I have already underlined and probably so much more that I can. but today when I was reading I came across this quote: "Talking goes to the head; 'being' goes to the heart and inspires." -Gary Morland

I don't just want to talk at them or to them. sure I want to talk with them and there are things that I hope they learn from things we talk about, but I want to "BE"
I want them to see me....
be still
be quiet
be caring
be patient
be loving
be kind
be a servant
be compassionate
be gentle
be a good friend
be a wife
be their mom

I want them to catch the "BEING" that I am doing and be inspired by that not just what I tell them.

I want them to see me " 'BE' this kind of person"
"Be humble, patient, bearing with one another in love. Don't be consumed by anger. Let your words build up and give grace. Avoid bitterness, wrath, and malice. Be kind, tenderhearted and forgiving." Ephesians 4


Sunday, May 14, 2017

Mother's Day

I got to have another blessed year being a mom to these two


I love that there is a special day that we get to celebrated the amazing women that shaped our lives and that we call come version of Mother.




Honey and Little girl

A group picture before my parents took the kids on a Honey and Bear mini vacation and the Hubby and I got to celebrate our anniversary
mother day though the years (or at least the ones i posted about)
2014 (a separate post about mothers here)
a post on motherhood not on mother's day, but in may

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Struggle and Book launch post 2

life can be such a struggle
family can be such a struggle
kids can be such a struggle
I can be such a struggle

today I am struggling. maybe because it is the end of a long week
maybe because a mini vacation is on the horizon and I am ready to taste it
maybe because I am putting to much on myself
maybe it is because I am huffing about a cancelled appointment we had for my son today
for sure I am not giving myself or the people I love grace

then I sit down to read the book "A Family Shaped by Grace" by Gary Morland
the book launch starts up in just a few days.
I am about half way through
I have already struggled with some of the book and had some good encouragement on it too.
I learned his use today for the word huffing (a word we use to use in reference to my daughter when she was a baby) I didn't realize how much of a huffer I was.
here is something he wrote in our Facebook group today:

"Growth in grace stops the moment I get huffed. I get huffed because I have a peculiar person to live with." O. Chambers

I will leave it just at this quote, because the other stuff he shared is personal to the page, but you get the drift right? "Growing in Grace is growing in un-huffiness."

Man how I needed to read that this morning after the cancelled appointment for Golden boy
and I sure could have read it again this afternoon after the HUGE mommy fail in dealing with my family.

Back to reading the book.......I came across this section that I will share and then the four words that almost brought me to tears:

"You were not made to live a frustrated, disappointed, estranged family life. You were made for love, acceptance, grace, connection, generosity, and forgiveness. You have been specially wired and gifted to cover your specific assignment, your course on the river. Your family is your course on the river. ..........You fit what you were made for. You were made to fit in your unique family for their good, your good and the good of the world influenced by your family now and in generations to come. ............YOU'RE FITTED FOR THIS."

Those four words: "YOU'RE FITTED FOR THIS"

just about brought me to tears. There is so much going on that I can never really convey in blog posts and there are times when I think why and how but to read this, to know that he does not give me more than I am able to handle. He fit me for THIS.
This life.
In Him I am plenty capable.

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

Belonging

oh my goodness this book
it has been such a good one
i have really enjoyed the process


and then i get the the end and while there is so much knowing in my head about what it said, daily living it out, putting it forward and remembering to turn my children over to the Father who knows and loves them so much more than i ever could it a hard one.

1 Samuel 1:28 "so now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord."

"Hannah was focused on her son serving God for a lifetime."

may that be what my goal for my children and their life be and that i will daily, their whole life give them over to the Lord. Because He loves them way more than i ever can and more than i can ever imagine.

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Chewie

not the Chewie you may be thinking about
although there is lots of Star Wars talk in our house so you may think that

the Chewie i am talk about is actually a blanket

this blanket was a gift from a coworker of mine and early on became on of Little girls favorite items.





at some point she started chewing on the edges of it.
i feel like that happened before this picture but this seems to be the first picture i have of her chewing on it.


once the chewing started i was afraid that she was going to destroy it.
but even more than that i knew that i needed to wash it way more and she hated to be with out it.
i was able to find two more at T.J.Maxx or Marshalls (i can't remember which one)
they were the same texture but not the same print.
when she asked for the blanket she was really fine with any of the three as long as there was one clean.
for some reason i can't seem to find photos of her with either of the other two blankets (just the original)


it was probably around this phase that she started calling it Chewie. 
this picture is from September of 2013
This is the last picture that i have come across with her and Chewie. but let it be said that she is 6 and a half and it was just this January that she stopped asking for it.

There were times when we never thought we would break her from chewing on it. We were fine that she wanted to sleep with it but she just refused to stop chewing on it. now, let me say that there was very little that we had to break her from. she never really took a bottle or pacifier. she nursed but pretty much weened herself. it was just this blanket that she was so attached to.

I don't know if it was that our whole routine changed this January after the kitchen flooded and her room flooded and we relocated her bed to Golden boys room but there were times that she asked for Chewie and then there were times that she wouldn't.
i found two of them under the bed and i think the other one was packed away somewhere.
once she was back in her room i washed them and put them up on a shelf in her closet.
she has finally grown out of needing it but i don't want to get rid of them either.

her new love is Beanie Boos

Sunday, April 30, 2017

A Reader

UPDATE: with the encouragement from my hubby Golden Boy decided to take an AR test on this book. HE GOT 100%
100%
we were all so excited and thrilled for him!!!

573 
573!
That is how many pages are in this book that Golden boy chose to read.

Chose!
I didn't choose it for him.
I didn't ask him to read it.
He chose it ALL on his own and then powered through it.
I am so amazingly proud of him. over the past 10 plus days he has been head deep, head down, intently focused on THIS book. I don't know if he wanted to prove to himself that he could read a 573 page book or just if he just wanted to enjoy the process. Either way i love the joy he is having in actually reading (a true love of mine)

AR this year for him is pretty much over but we have been encouraging him to at least try and take the test on it and to see how he does. regardless of the outcome of the test, i am beyond proud of him for accomplishing the goal of reading a 573 page book.

A goal no one set for him but himself.
He is brave and pretty much amazing.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Book Launch post 1

I still can't believe that I was chosen to be part of this book launch.
From the first moment that I saw the Book, the cover, the title, I knew that i wanted to read it and hoped that I would get to be a part of the launch.
The day i found out i would get to be part of it I was thrilled. So now I am wading through the words and the stories and how it can help my family. I am excited to share more of it with you guys over the next couple of months. Be on the look out....

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Smokey Joe

and while the kitchen is fully functional we aren't fully finished with it yet either
remember the wood burning stove that we had in our kitchen?
well that little stove, that we lovingly call our smokey joe, has yet to be put back into the kitchen. the smokey joe was pretty much the selling point of the house. there really were no other redeeming qualitles about the house but the smokey joe and the wood floors that were under the carpet everywhere. now don't get me wrong, I have grown to truly love this house. so currently smokey joe sits on our back porch. it is a beast of a thing to lift, not that I have tried, but come on, it is made of cast iron......it's heavy.

the stone veneer around the smokey joe before it was removed looked like this.



the shape of it doesn't bother me but the fact that it went all the way to the wall was really weird to us. we just lived with it for the last 10 years because really we didn't know what else to do with it or even why it was like that.



now we are at the decision in the kitchen process where everything is done and functional but the smokey joe still isn't installed. 

I have a whole pinterest board for the wood burning stove with lots of ideas but we just can't decide what exactly we want.

this is what we know and want: we don't want it to look like it did before
we want the footprint to be small (the area that the stove sits on)
we want it to coordinate with the rest of the kitchen
we don't want to be too high off of the ground

here is my pin board of the wood stoves that we have seen and saved so far
and there are so many other choices to go with too.