For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

Monday, February 23, 2009

Weekend Fun

Brad and the boys spent Friday and Saturday(until evening) on a church trip to"Super Start" in OK. The boys had been looking forward to this event for over a month, and the days finally arrived. Both boys talked their dad into being a sponsor. Brad doesn't really mind, as he loves to share these experiences with the kids, and he is so great with Pre -teens. All three left in high spirits but returned somewhat worse for wear. Brad wasn't feeling so great (his allergies were getting him down), and the boys apparently didn't sleep,thus being "grumpy pants" the whole evening. An early bedtime Saturday night was definitely in order.
While the big boys were away, mom spent time at home with the other kiddos. Nate asked a friend to spend Friday night, and they had such a good time. I enjoyed watching(and listening) as they interacted together. We rented movies and had a "movie party" on Friday night. On Saturday, they spent a few hours playing. Their very favorite thing to play was blocks. I loved the terrific tower they built, and the fact that it was turned into a "hot wheels" station....very creative! My girls spent hours playing dolls and house mom spent her time cleaning house and finishing some laundry. I am so thankful for this time because I now feel somewhat more organized and"together" again.
We decided some family time was in order on Sunday. So, after church, we went out to lunch and spent the day "dream" shopping. My washer and dryer(the dryer is 13 yrs old)are on the blink. I am hopefully wishing for a nice front loading set in the next few we began our research. The boys had fun day dreaming about flatscreen TV's, sound systems, new computers, and video games... yeah, a few hours spent at the electronics store! The girls had more fun looking at pretty dresses and new spring outfits. I am so proud of all of us... we did all this "dream" shopping and only bought Mandy's Easter Dress(and it was on sale).
Does anyone have "front loading" washers and Dryers? Any recommendations?? The sales guy said LG's are the highest consumer rated... just wondering??
P.S. My friend Kimi is having a giveaway on her blog site...check it She is giving away the cutest personalized(with your child's name) clippies. Her blogspot is just tons of fun to read and such a testimony!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Quick Trip...

We made a quick trip back to Little Rock for Mandy's post surgery check-up. The doctor said it looks good, but he wouldn't say if this was definitely the final surgery. We have another check-up trip in April. He wants to recheck her ear and will then make a decision as to whether he thinks another surgery is needed to refine it. In all honesty it is a bit hard to tell as the ear is still very swollen, and so, we understand the need to wait for compelete healing before knowing anything. We will be confident in any decision that the surgeon makes. We all went with Mandy this trip and had a good day spending time together. The kids even got a good portion of their schoolwork done on the ride and while waiting at the hospital.
Another busy day in our family...

Sunday, February 15, 2009

This and That

Aren't they gorgeous?!! BFF's...

Hours of playing fun...

What do you do while you wait at the hospital?...put together puzzles of course.

But we would much rather play on the playground...Driving the tugboat

Maybe we would rather be train least Levi would...

...or let's play Mountain Explorers...

MANDY's SURGERY... This is post Phase III and pre- Phase IV

After surgery... later that evening, we had to remove the stained bandages and put on ointment ... Mandy got to see her ear for the first time...she was so excited and amazed(we were too... God has truly blessed Dr Key's hands and given him amazing abilities)

A front view... Relaxing with her new MP3 player... her Valentine from her #1 boyfriend, her daddy
LEGO MANIA has hit our house... our boys have a new found interest in legos... they have been occupied for hours this week... Here are two lego buddies...

Nolan helping his little bro...

Some Lego Creations...

Garrett and Nate hard at work on their designs...

Just wanted to share a few of the pictures from the last week or so. We started the week with Mandy's surgery. She is managing it all very well. Mom,however, is exhausted. We have just been trying to get caught up with school and housework. We have spent most of the week laying low at home. None of us have felt up to doing much and are generally exhausted. I am praying that it is because we are tired and not getting the flu.

We had a low key Valentine's Day. The kids had some friends spending the day with us and enjoyed playing with their friends. Mia was so happy because her "bestest" friend got to spend the day at her house. While the kids played, mom and dad were able to tackle a few chores. Daddy had to help put up fence guards on the LL baseball fields here in town. I spent the day trying to catch up on laundry(... I think it feeds on itself and grows by the minute,haha). We have to do 2-3 loads a day around here or it takes over. Mom made special heart shaped PB&J sandwhiches for lunch, and we spent part of the afternoon watching movies.

We started a tradition a few years back of eating a "fancy" dinner at home for our Valentine celebration. Our tradition dates back a few years and begins when Brad and the boys(before the girls joined our family)dressed up in suits. I planned a dinner at home to avoid the restaurant crowds. Brad surprised me by having the boys dressed in suits as they came to the dinner table. I looked up, and one by one the boys entered the room(from youngest to oldest) carrying a single red rose. By the time they were all seated, I was crying happy tears. Brad scored big points for that amazingly romantic Valentine's dinner several years ago. From that year on we have continued the tradition of a "formal" dinner at home. ...Memories... This year I fixed the "fancy" dinner, but we kept it a little less formal because we weren't feeling much up to it. We did set the table complete with tablecloth,cloth napkins, china, and candle light, but we opted out of the dress up part. The kids amaze me at how wonderfully they manage. We work regularly on table manners, and they transfer those manners into more formal ones. We enjoy visiting with one another and listening to music. As a special gift to mom, the kids work extra hard at proper table etiquette. They are pleasant to one another(which is a big plus). It is fun to share this extra special event, and I love sharing it all with them!

I hope your Valentine's day was filled with love,love,Love. ...Mine definitely was!

Monday, February 9, 2009


Mandy is out of surgery. She is doing well, and we have been able to control her pain with a mild pain killer. The doctor said she was a super patient... I think she "buttered" him up with her note she gave to him before surgery. Really, she just has a wonderful, grateful,and loving heart, and she wanted to share with her doctor the appreciation she felt for his skill and hard work and for her "new" ear. This surgery should conclude her ear reconstruction; however, we have at least one follow up visit to Little Rock probably sometime next week.
When she is feeling up to it, we will take and then post pictures of her new ear. Thank you all for the prayers that you have prayed on her behalf over the last year. We have certainly felt them, and we are confident that they have blessed our wonderful surgeon's hands.

Friday, February 6, 2009


There are some days that I just beat myself up over not getting enough accomplished. I have felt that way everyday this week. I have lots of "projects" started and haven't managed to complete one. Everything just seems chaotic and "topsy-turvy"... and then I reflect back over the last year, the last month, the last week and realize that there has been a lot going on in this family. All of this reminds me that it is okay to give myself a little break...

Just a little reflection...

2)We went through 4 different surgeries with 2 different children.

3)We added another child to our family.

4)We bought a house and tried to sell one.

5)We have 3 boys involved in baseball(4 if you count the "big" boy in our house,who just happens to love baseball), and 2 princess in dance class(that means practice,dress rehersal and a recital).

6)Did I mention, we homeschool?(haha)I love spending my days with my children and teaching them, but homeschooling means having them with me all the time. I love it; however, I have to remember this adds a different dimension to my family. It helps me to accept that my house will never be perfectly clean and that I can only accomplish just so much.

...and now in 2009, we continue to be busy and to keep ourselves busy. We have already been through one surgery(Levi's) and are preparing for a second(Mandy's) coming up. We will be closing(Praise God!!) on the sale of our old house at the end of next week. The kids are involved in dance and music lessons which will be closely followed by baseball season and dance recital. I have been working on organizing the school room (this is not going as quickly as I would like) and ultimately my house. Once I get the "school room" running smoothly, it will bring our controlled chaos to one room of the house instead of all over it. I am also trying to slowly change the decor around our new house. In our spare time Brad and I are busy painting, building shelves, and changing(modernizing) things. This process seems so slow to me; however, I am trying to keep it all in perspective.
Thank You God that you give me the insight to reflect and the strength to accomplish all that we do!

On a side note: adding to our fun... Mandy will be undergoing her 4th and final surgery this coming Monday. She is a little anxious and very excited to complete the ear reconstruction. We are being allowed to see such sweet glimpses of her heart... she is the most worried about talking to her doctor. She wants to tell him"that I think he is a terrific doctor, and to thank him for the terrific job he has done on my ear." I stand humbled... God is certainly Amazing, isn't He?!