Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Last night was Roger's birthday. Cate was very excited to make him a cake with her new Easy Bake oven that she had gotten for Christmas. Daddy was properly appreciative of the quarter inch thick cake with packaged chocolate drizzle on top. :)

I have been slacking on my blogging lately- with good reason. :)

My long-lost husband returned home from overseas early this month and we've been busy spending all of his time off with him- he was able to take over a month off!
Here is some of what we've been up to:

* celebrating homecomings and families
* welcoming father and husband, brother and son

* rollercoaster riding (for Roger and the kids at Nickelodeon Universe)

* making snow forts and tunnels on the few days that it hasn't been too cold or too blizzard-y to be outside!

* feeling blessed by our Father for the gifts he has given

Friday, December 5, 2008

Sights, sounds and the excitement of the season....
* the squeals of delight upon seeing the tree all set up
* having a mantle to hang our stockings on
* the anticipation of seeing my husband for the first time in 6 months!
* looking out the window early in the morning to see the dusting of powder snow
* singing along to Baby, It's Cold Outside- my favorite!
* starting the cookie making process with many sticky fingers offering to "help"
* a cozy fire in the fireplace

* the many, many questions- including, "Why did Jesus come as a baby?"
* the reminder of the delight, wonder and innocence of childhood

I hope that you all have as much to look forward to this season as I do!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My family (minus my husband) this Thanksgiving.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

My evening was filled with a fun game of Go Fish....

Cate won almost every game, much to Joel's disappointment (and a little anger). She wasn't a very gracious winner and would laugh an evil laugh everytime she got another match. Oh, they make me giggle.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Saturday we found ourselves at the zoo with some very good friends, despite the wind and cold. Most of the zoo is indoors, so we were still able to see plenty of exhibits and finished just as they were locking the gates.
The jellyfish exhibit....
Joel's favorite- the shark tunnel. We were there at feeding time, which was very exciting to watch....


Inside the Butterfly and Insect Pavilion....
The gorilla exhibit was, of course, the favorite. There was a 5 year old female named Bambio that was putting on a show for us. She would bang on the glass and pound her chest, swing around and clap to us- as if to urge us to do the same. Cate bonded quite well with her as the Bambio was around her age, the same weight and only slightly larger. She could have watched the gorilla all day. Me too.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Finally a picture of the work my sister and I did in the master bedroom. Of course this doesn't do it justice. It is perfect!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Cate and Joel making snow castles this morning- our first snow of the year.

My four-year-old boy learned to ride his bike yesterday. He was excited to show off his new skill.

Monday, November 3, 2008

My son this morning...

Sunday, November 2, 2008

My day today has been filled with such treasures as,

"Can Daddy lift a table with his pinky?"

"Why don't ALL houses have plungers, Mommy?"


"If at first you don't susseed, try, try again."

Children are one of the many reminders God has given us to laugh.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

I have been blessed with the most beautiful children in the world. No other words are needed. :)

Monday, October 27, 2008

I realize that I am quite unfaithful to this blogging commitment....but I suppose better late than never! :)

Last Saturday Cate, Joel and I went to visit their Grandma and Grandpa Howard. We spent the day at a nearby pumkpin patch called Pistol Pete's.

There were graveyards, bonfires, corn mazes, haunted houses and the favorite activity...panning for (fool's) gold. The kids both found a few pieces of the gold as well as some other rocks that they thought were shiny and pretty.

Cate searching through the rocks for priceless treasures...

Joel trying out the hay pile for perfect jump-ability...

And ooohhh, the corn maze. It was a good hour of winding around through a huge field with Joel leading us most of the way with, "I'm not getting us lost, Mom."
We made it through safely.

Monday, October 20, 2008

I decided it was time to take a break from all the indoor work and spend part of the afternoon out of doors raking leaves. The kids are young enough that they don't think it's work- after all they DID get to jump in the enormous pile! We haven't finished, but we ran out of bags.
I am sure many more leaves will fall before winter hits, giving us plenty more to do, but for now....back to painting!
My ever talented and artistic sister, Betsy was here to visit for a few days last week. It was so fun and I always get a free interior design consultation out of it! We were able to get quite a few things done and here are some of the results (more coming later).

I've had this buffet for three years now. I bought it with the intentions of painting it red. Isn't it pretty now that it's finally done?

Sunday, October 12, 2008

We spent the afternoon at a nearby apple orchard/ pumpkin patch the other day. We love this apple orchard. They have several varieties of delicious apples (Cortlands being my current favorite). And we were able to ride out and pick our own, which Cate and Joel thoroughly enjoyed.
They enjoyed seeing some of the aspects of harvesting apples. Joel found this machine to be quite fascinating.
And there were many delectable treats available. Last year we had gotten some caramel apple crisp mix that was absolutely delicious! This year we bought some of their homemade caramel and 10 pounds of apples that I plan to make into breads, applesauce and, of course, apple crisp. These apples are perfect munching as well. While there I learned that the apples we buy in grocery stores have been pumped full of so many chemicals and such that the ones they sell as fresh could be as many as five years old. I found that to be quite disturbing- not to mention disgusting.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Two of the cutest kids I can find around here...

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

These things will hopefully be the makings of a pink/princess clown costume for Cate. I had been asking both of my kids to be a clown for years, but they always want something far more "exciting". This year I was able to convince Cate to be a "clown princess". Yay! All so I could make a fabulous costume- after all how can you mess up a clown costume? Piece of cake! I must confess that I am no seamstress. I started this process yesterday with the pants- thinking to get the easier part out of the way. And, of course, I thought to "wing it". I finished the pants and much to my amazement they looked quite like clown pants- until I tried them on Cate and realized that they are a quite a bit snug. I immediately called my mom (as I do in my moments of distress for she is a wealth of knowledge on all things domestic) who said it was no big deal and I could fix it easily (in theory at least).
I am waiting for talent to be bestowed upon me- any talent. Until then I will grit my teeth and persevere. This costume WILL get finished!

Monday, October 6, 2008

My comfy new slippers...

...which I have twice forgotten I was wearing and ended up traipsing all around the town in them.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Friday, September 26, 2008

Yesterday my dad left for home. We spent the morning at the park before he had to leave. We went for a short walk and played for quite awhile.
the troll under the bridge....
my dad having a splendid time, I'm sure, chasing Cate and Joel around the playset...
making sure he still fits down the slide...
Joel tempting the hungry troll with a few tasty toes...

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Learning from the master...

Cate and Joel have really enjoyed the extra grandpa time while my dad has been here. He's very patient with them- one of the things that I tend to fail miserably at as a parent. Grandpa brought along a violin and a mandelin, so the kids really had fun playing around and learning a few of the very basics.
Joel's arms weren't long enough to hold the violin correctly, but he still really enjoyed his "lesson".

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Today was a leisurely kind of day. My dad has been visiting and today we went to a nearby town to do some singing at a care center. After the first performance we went to a local ice cream shoppe for two sundaes, a banana split, and some fried ice cream.
We licked our plates clean, did a little sight seeing and then on to another care center performance. It was a fun learning experience for Cate and Joel and some positive socialization to boot!.....I can count this as school....right? :)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Happy Autumn!

Thumbs up: Changing leaves, sweater weather, using the fireplace, hot cocoa, the crisp air during a morning walk, sharing in the harvest with gifts of cucumbers, tomatoes, squash and pumpkins, a tasty treat of candy corn mixed with peanuts, and another reminder that God is in control.

Thumbs down: Spiders that migrate indoors at the first sign of cooler weather...actually that's the only thing there is!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Joel taking over some of the "manly" jobs while Daddy is gone.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

The sheer pride expressed in the first, "I DID IT!" is so worth the frustration of watching as clumsy, little fingers try to tie shoes.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Today was a deliciously perfect picnic kind of summer day. It was 75 and sunny with a slight breeze and there haven't been many of those lately. So Cate, Joel and I drove to the park with food and camera in hand.
....the crew....
....our fare....
....Joel having a fabulous time....
.....and the kids decided to do a little weeding of the park area while there....