Our Little Family

Our Little Family

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Wild Turkeys and Wild Indians

Life has been full of wild turkeys and Indians in these here parts. :-)  
We have had several encounters with real wild turkeys in our yard!  It's so cool to have wild life roaming around!

 And of course we always have wild Indians!!!   Karis decided to get her war paint on for battle and used up almost all of my lipsticks. 

Here the boys are excavating their chocolate chips after a great lesson about mineral, rocks, and fossils in our science home school book.

I've been busy too.  See that island that the boys are sitting at.  I made that!!  I found the buffet on Craiglist, painted it, put new hardware and bead board and trim, and made a butcher block top out of maple.  Now we have a bar/island/butcher block!

Life is exciting here whether it be new projects, wild turkeys, or adventures with our little wild Indians!!!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Spring of 15

 Spring of 2015 has been wonderful and hard, a mix of bitter and sweet.  Paw Paw has been sick, and he is the hospital today.    He is such a major part of our lives, our family, our hearts.... 
We know we need to treasure each day with him.  

Little Karis looks for him everyday, and she loves her PAWPAW so much. 

Besides sharing life with PawPaw and Grandma, we keep busy around here.
This spring...
  • We finished up Clark's 2nd grade and Joel's kindergarten year of homeschooling.
  •   We are raised frogs from tadpoles found in our yard.  
  • We started remodeling our kitchen.  
  • We planted a garden. 
  • I made a boot holder for our back porch.
  •  I refinished our cabinets and table top. 
  •  We kept a fresh bouquet of wild flowers picked from the backyard. 
  •  I made a picture collage for the living room. 
  •  I painted a buffet, and I am in the works of making a butcher block counter top for it.  
  • We hunted and trapped a killer raccoon that was getting our chickens.  
  • Clark and Joel finished another season of soccer with Lee University!  
  • Our three boy rabbits turned out to be one male and two females who had babies on the same day.  So now we are raising lots of baby rabbits. 

 Here's the before and after of the kitchen island.  The counter top still has to be made.
Joel graduated from kindergarten, and he had a great little graduation ceremony thanks to BCHE.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Easter 2015

Happy Easter, dear friends and family.  We hope this Easter will stir our hearts to be fully engaged and impassioned to live a life pleasing to our God.

Snowball and Ice cream joined the photo.  Cheese It soon joined as well.
I love this picture.  It was the last one I got.  It shows their personalities so well.  Clark is my rock and still trying to do everything just right.   Joel is cuddled up all close to his baby sister because he is watching over her and protecting her.  Levi is my Mr. Independent and silly nonconformist .  And Karis is not able to sit any more because she is my "Gotta Run Girl".
My pretty little girl

Sunday, February 1, 2015

A Beautiful Life

 Katie, our sweet almost 14 year old Border Collie, lived a beautiful life.
Today I take moment to celebrate her life and mark her passing.

She had not been eating or drinking for a few days this past week.  We too were sick with the flu, but I knew she was dying.  We all spent many sweet moments with her while she was resting.  I told her the moment she told me she was in pain, I would take her to the doctor.  Well on Friday night she started barking which is something she has never done in 14 years.  She was a very quiet dog.  Between basketball games on Saturday, we took her to the vet, and he was certain she was dying too.  The children went out to the truck, and I stayed with her.

I whispered all the beautiful memories we shared in her ear.  I told her how proud I was of her, the best dog in the world.  I told her she was my friend, my partner, my quiet encourager.  I was with her till the end trying to repay all the love that she had poured on me through the 14 years spent together.

She was our first child in many ways.
 Before having human children, I brushed her teeth daily, celebrated her birthday by taking her to the pet store to let her pick out a present and treats.  We took her everywhere we went.  We even bought a vehicle that she would ride in comfortably.     She didn't seem to mind the intrusion of  human children.  She enjoyed the additions to our family as they came.  She taught them the game of catch like a pro.

 She was a super star in our family.  A dog that loved and played with all her heart.  Here's little Clark and baby Joel playing with her in the backyard.
She will be missed more than words can express.  There will never be another Katie.  
She had a beautiful life.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Wrapping Up 2014

 2014...Hmmmm what a year!!!!
I have to say I have never experienced anything like it.
So many wonderful things happened like
  • Michael's new job
  • the home of our dreams
  •  in-laws moving in
  • getting chickens
  • two kids homeschooling
  • living in Cleveland (crazy thing is I've wanted to live here even when we lived in Dallas)
  • a new amazing church and church family (Cleveland First Baptist is great!)
  •  our family complete with four beautiful healthy children.

But what a hard year too with missing my amazing, incredible friends in Hixson,  injuries and illnesses, moving (UGGG), starting over, faith shakers, and adjustments that have stretched us thin.

Here's some moments captured toward the end of the year.
Joel is our soccer star.  He is really fast and really focused.  Every time he scores, he turns back and gives us a thumbs up.  We see it a lot!!!
Christmas was fantastic this year.  We couldn't hardly wait for it.  Michael found a broken down go-cart on Craigslist during the summer.  He spent lots of time working to fix it up and getting it in top notch shape for Christmas.  It was a hit!!!  The boys also got bikes.  Karis got a dollhouse, vacuum, and a little kitchen.  Clark and Joel got BB guns too.  We found almost everything at a consignment sale or Craigslist this year for GREAT prices in great  condition!!! 
 And we got some sparklers and Roman candles for New Year's Eve.  The kids loved them, even though it was COLD!! 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Bird Brain Fun

 Life has been soaring pretty high around here lately. And we have had a lot of fun--much has revolved around our chickens.  

I got to have a girls night out the other day.  We painted.  Here's a picture of my painting.  It was a lot of fun to paint.  I am addicted.
 We finally cleaned out the tower, and we climbed it for the first time.  
Here's a bird's eye view from the top!!!  
It's a nice view of the Smokey Mountains from there!
Clark LOVES it up there.
 Here's our little Chicken Run.  The boys love to push each other in the wagon while holding a hen!!!  The hens don't seem to mind.  :-)

 We're having a little ducky fun in the yard after a big rain.  We made little boats with recycling materials and watched as they trickled down the water ways.
 One of Clark's jobs each day is collecting the eggs.  It's kind of like a treasure hunt each day.  We get 8 a day!
 Then this weekend, we had an awesome time.  For starters, we got some chicks!!  Five Americana (Easter Eggers) and 6 Barred Rocks (1 is a rooster).  Michael built a hutch, and the boys love playing with the chicks!!  Joel had his last soccer game.  He had a great season.  We went to an awesome church on Sunday and served in the nursery.  Then we saw Grandpa and Grandma at the hospital.  We went to a hilarious Upward Soccer Family Celebration.  And after that we went to Grace Point's Fall Festival. 
 Clark meet the real Darth Vader (or at least it felt like it).  We all were very nervous to come close to him.  He was gigantic and sounded like the real deal.
We petted farm animals, played games, bounced in bounce houses, roasted marshmallows, trunk-or-treated, and meet some really nice people.

Life is good.  And we have discovered life is funner with chickens!!!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Mom's Turn

 There is a beautiful path that leads into the woods by our chicken coop.  I had a feeling it would make great pictures.  So we tried it out yesterday.  I like how it turned out!

 Michael took these for us.  I had to pull him away from working on the chicken coop. :-)

 Joel, who is five, took this one.  He did good.  :-)

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Fall is HERE!!

 Hooray...fall is here.  It's so pretty here with the colors, trees, grass, everything.  I am pretty excited about taking pictures this year.  So friends, come out for a visit.  And I might try to take your pictures too.

We are enjoying the weather with bonfires, shooting, hikes, and staying outside all the time!
 Boys are learning how to shoot their BB gun.  Joel is ready to go hunting!!
 Grandpa's wagon makes a great prop.

Friday, September 12, 2014

9 Chickens and Counting...

 Lucky, Allie, Lilly, Burgundy, Fern, and the rest of the girls are seeming to enjoy their new home.  We drove way out in the country (and if you think we live out, you ain't seen nothing) to pick them up on Thursday.   They are sweet and tame and love corn.  Elmo our gentle lab plumb came unglued when he saw the birds and attacked the one we named Lucky.  Lucky for Lucky, Grandma was there to save her.  They are about five months old, and they should start laying one egg a day soon. 

The boys LOVE their hens.  They love petting and holding them...ALL DAY LONG.  :-)

Monday, September 1, 2014

The End of Summer

 Summer is almost over, and I find myself lamenting the passing of this season's highlights like lightning bugs and the beautiful green hue of life that surrounds me.  Despite all the challenges and stress of the move, our first summer has been very special in Serenity Valley.  Everything is new and exciting around here.
Karis has enjoyed water more than any other baby I have had.  
She has no fear of it and wants to put her head under.  She recently started walking in August. 
Clark learned to swim a few days ago.  He asked to take of his life jacket, and he jumped in.  He has my curse of sinking, but he is confident and can swim underwater.  He was doing flips under the water and jumping off the sides within minutes. 


 The love gardening, and this year I started a butterfly garden.  We have a variety of butterflies that float around.

Muddy Buddies
  This mud puddle has been at the center of hours of enjoyment this summer.
 It's been a prehistoric lake, a monster truck mud pit, and many more things.
This one little puddle has made my little heart so happy.  Who would have thought?
One of my favorite things here is summer is the dragonflies.  They gracefully dance and soar all around us.  When I am stressed and wonder what in the world we are doing here, I go sit by the pond and watch these little amazing creatures dance in the wind.  I am reminded there are many reasons we are here, but the fact IS I AM HERE.   And it's up to me to make the best of every situation I am in. 
 Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 
1 Thessalonians 5:18