Monday, May 31, 2010

Fun at the zoo

We went to the zoo a couple weeks ago with our good friends, the Huffman family. We had a great time seeing all the animals and my children had a fun time spending time with the Huffman children.

Aaron's most favorite animal - the elephant!!

Martin in the fun zoo helicoptor - Noah (one of the Huffman boys') is hanging on the ladder.

I rented a double stroller for Jonathan and Rosalie. However, I ended up using both the double stroller and Rosalie's regular stroller. So, Joshua Huffman and Jonathan rode together in the double stroller.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Rosalie and the goose

Rosalie wanted so badly to touch this goose . . . then she wanted to feed it. Neither worked out for her, but she had a great time!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Cleaning the porch

3 paint brushes + 1 bucket of soapy water + 3 excited and willing boys = a clean porch
I swept the porch the best that I could and then put my boys to work to clean it. They actually did a fine job! In the last couple of pictures they started working on the siding of the house.
Aaron, much to my surprise, was the hardest worker on this particular day. He kept telling the other two that they needed to stop messing around and get to work. I overheard him telling Martin, "children don't normally get to do a job like this, so you better get busy!"
Three observations from me: 1. I love how much they loved doing this "job".
2. I love how had they worked.
3. I love that it kept their hands busy.

Friday, May 21, 2010

My Grandad

Granddad and Great Uncle Earl in Washington D.C. to see the World War 2 Memorial

Great Uncle Earl, Granddad, and Dad


Senator Bob Dole with Great Uncle Earl and Granddad
(Thanks to my cousin Stephen for the pictures)

I am sad to say that my Paternal Grandfather, Arvis Daniels died on Wednesday morning, May 19, 2010. My Granddad has been in and out of the hospital quite a bit over the past few months and has been suffering with some lung issues. He was a fighter, though, and really wanted to live to see his 90th birthday which is June 30th of this year.

I am not sure exactly how to process all of this right now. I am so sad. He was a great man. I remember him as always having a great attitude - always seeing the positive in any situation. I am mostly sad because it has been 3 years since the last time I saw him. My children didn't get the chance to know him. I know that I would be sad no matter what the situation. It's always hard to lose the people you love, but for some reason I think that it might be easier for me if I had had the opportunity to see him and talk to him just one more time.
We will be traveling soon to be with family and attend the services. I will be singing at the service. I sang at the funeral services of 2 of my other grandparents - so this is familiar territory for me. However, that was before I had children. You might be wondering what that has to do with it. Since I've had children . . . the tears tend to flow more freely and easily. I am not sure how "professional" I can be this time around. So, if you think about it, say a prayer that just during those brief moments that I am singing - I can focus enough to sing clearly, and that it will be a time of worship and praise for everyone.
My Dad said that my Granddad was ready to go "home". He said that Granddad told the doctor that he was ready to go "home". The doctor looked confused, and my Aunt Sharon told the doctor that he was ready to go to heaven and be with Jesus. I know for sure that he was indeed ready. He was a fighter until the end - so, if he actually said that he wanted to be with Jesus - then he was most certainly at peace and ready to go.

Also - if you think about it - please pray for my Aunt Sharon. She has suffered much loss in the past couple of years.

Hide and Seek with Rosalie and Jonathan

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Martin's first trophy

Martin finished up his first season of soccer. He really enjoyed it and has said that he definitely wants to do it again next season. He especially was excited to receive this trophy! It even has his name engraved on it!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My first cone ...

We went to Goodberry's last week for Martin's closing soccer ceremony. Aaron insisted that he wanted a cone. So, I explained to him the importance of eating quickly for obvious reasons. He rather enjoyed the cone, but did not enjoy the mess that came along with it. I asked him the next day what he would get if we went again . . . and he said, "a cup!"

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Statistics about my childbearing years

These are not necessarily interesting facts for anyone to read. This is going to serve mostly as a remembrance entry for me.

Between May 2, 2002 and the present day:

**I have had a baby on my hip continuously for over 8 years.
**I have changed about 18,000 diapers and still going strong.
**I am thankful that most of those have been cloth diapers!
**We managed to keep from spending about $5000 or more on diapers by using cloth!
**I have been changing diapers since May 2, 2002. . . and have always had my next baby before my previous baby was out of diapers.
**I practically diapered 3 of my children without cost - other than laundering.
(I made all the cloth diapers and for every 4 that I made, I sold 2 of them - which paid for the cost of the supplies of making them)
**I was pregnant for 39 months total between August of 2001 - Feb. 2009
**I nursed 4 babies for 66 months(5 1/2 years) . . . and am still nursing my youngest.
**If I am still nursing my youngest baby in August, I will have been nursing or pregnant for 9 years straight.
**I haven't slept in past 7 AM since sometime early in 2002. Not kidding, nor exaggerating . . . and I even consider sleeping until 7 AM sleeping in these days. It has been so long since I have slept until 7 AM, that I cannot remember when it last happened.
**I have not slept a single night through since sometime the Spring of 2002. I imagine that I might never do that again. It's not that I have had babies waking me up every night since then, it is that my Mommy gene just won't allow me to sleep too soundly - just in case I should be needed. (although - for most of that time, I have had babies waking me.)
**Rosalie is the only baby of all 4 of my babies to ever take a bottle, and she only did that once due to an outpatient surgery that I had.
**I am thankful that she only ever had to have one bottle because expressing milk was probably the most torturous thing I have ever had to do. (exaggerated a little, maybe)
**I've had a high chair next to our table for over eight years.
**I've had baby toys and gadgets out and about in my house for eight years.
**I've potty trained 3 boys.
**I've taught 2 boys to read.
**I've homeschooled Martin through the 2nd grade and Aaron through most of Kindergarten.
**I've pulled 7 teeth.
**I've kissed about 20,000 booboos.
**I've given out over a million hugs and kisses per child - I always stop counting after a million! (((LOL)))
**I have smiled, laughed, cried, and prayed more in the past 9 years than I ever have in my life.

**I have a rich and blessed life that I wouldn't trade for anything in the world!

Who needs dolls?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Tank Cake

Martin had his very first "invite friends" birthday party this past Saturday. We had it at our house and made it a soldier theme. I made Martin a US Army tank cake. It is most definitely one of the most fun projects that I have ever done! I made a vanilla rectangle cake for the bottom layer. It's a wonderful vanilla cake recipe that I got from my friend, Janet. If you need a great cake recipe, let me know, and I'll email it to you.
The top two layers were chocolate. (another great recipe, if you make "from scratch" cakes) The middle layer is a circle with the two sides cut off - giving it an oblong shape. The top layer is a circle cake that I cut into a much smaller circle.

Next step was putting the green frosting on the cake, and the "Newman O's"(similar to Oreo's but made with organic ingredients) cookies on the side for the wheels. I used chocolate flavored twizzlers for the tracks.

I broke a cookie in half, and used one side of the cookie for an opening hatch. We placed a soldier in the hatch.

Rich pushed toothpicks through the long twizzler that we used for the main gun on the tank, stablilizing it and keeping it sturdy.

The two stars on the side were candles. I found lots of pictures online that gave me this idea. I used the ideas from the pictures that I found and came up with a creation that worked for us.

I'll be posting more about Martin's party later this week. We had a really good time and made some great memories!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

In Our Own Backyard

Chasing Jonathan down . . . I am certain he's earned it.

Off topic, but I do wash his Puggles shirt alot. :)

Chasing someone with a stick?!?!?

And she's always right in the middle of all the action.

Friday, May 14, 2010

I really do think I am cute . . . really!

This girl is a diva!

She rather enjoys being the center of attention

Rosalie knows how to have fun!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


It's amazing how much fun it can be to put the chairs in a line and play train.
I couldn't choose just 1 of the pictures.
I like this one because Jonathan is obviously saying, "choo-choo".
I like this one because of how Rosalie is looking at her big brothers.

And ... I like this one because they are all looking at the camera. So rare!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Wake up time

Rosalie . . . dear, sweet, Rosalie. Wake up time is not 4:30 AM. One thing that I have learned since becoming a mother - it can always get worse. I've been waking up with Rosalie at 5:00-5:30 AM every single day since last September. That's right. Sleeping in would be getting to sleep until 6:00AM! So, I'll admit it. I am so tired of waking up at 5:30AM. I've complained and whined about it. The very things I spend many hours a day teaching my children not to do. After many mornings of feeling as though . . . I am just not going to make it through the day . . . it gets worse. So, now I am wishing for my 5:30 AM back. It's funny how something as dreaded 5:30 AM can become your wish. I keep telling myself that this is just a season . . . it too shall pass. But let's be real, folks. This momma could use a vacation.

Now, we can all agree that I am my worst enemy. Go to bed earlier - HELLO!!! What a great solution. I could go to bed at 8 PM, and my problems would be over. I'd get plenty of sleep that way. That time of night just happens to be the only time of day that I have to myself. I get on my computer, read, watch TV. . .and I do those things without interruption. I do those things without anyone asking me for anything. So, I really need that time to unwind and just enjoy the quiet. Quiet is one of my most favorite things these days. My days are full of noise. (lots of good noises, arguing noises, tattling noises, crazy noises, wrestling noises, swordfighting noises, happy noises, etc.)
The last time I blogged about Rosalie's not so fun wake up times, she slept late the next day. So . . . let's see what happens this time. :)
Oh . . . and Rich and I are working on some sort of solution for the waking - so I'll have to update you on that once we figure it out.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Just some fun shots

an enthusiastic observer of Aaron's soccer game ...

not sure who he is aimin' at

give this boy a shovel and bucket, and it will keep him busy for hours!

He loves his cars and trucks!

Just being silly!

The silly face she makes when I break out the camera

IMPOSSIBLE! (to get 4 children to all look at the camera)

He can make a game out of anything.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Thankful for my husband

My facebook status yesterday said:

"My husband is my hero. I am blessed beyond measure to be married to him, and I am so thankful that my boys have a man of such character to call their daddy. Just had to say that."
A little sappy? Maybe. True, though.
We've just come through a tough season. Rich worked dilligently on the Huffman campaign. He spent every spare moment, and some not so spare moments working toward the goal of getting Huffman elected. He has sacrificed time with his family, sleep, and leisure time working toward gaining our country back. I believe in this cause too, and because of that, I was willing to do whatever it took to sacrifice on my end, so that he was free to help where he was needed.
Tuesday was an enormously difficult day for us. Dan Huffman did not get elected. He was close. The top 3 candidates were within 800 votes of each other. He ran an upright and God-honoring campaign. We can't say that about all the candidates involved. When Danny spoke to us as the election results came in . . . he said, "God told me that I needed to run, but He didn't tell me that I would win."
So, Danny was faithful to do what God was leading him to do. Rich did what God was leading him to do by helping Danny. I have to tell you, though. It's hard to suffer a loss like this when you have put your heart and soul into something you believe to be the right thing.
Would I rather be married to a man who will say anything to get a vote, whether it is the truth or not? Or, would I rather be married to a man who will tell the truth no matter what the cost?
Integrity. It's worth more than a billion votes. I am thankful for what my husband has been doing the past few months.
I am thankful that our children have a father with integrity.
While many disappointments come our way, and many uncertainties follow, we are certain of a few things.
We will keep serving the Lord.
We will continue to be faithful to Him.
We will keep loving Him.
We will do our best to teach our children to do the same thing.