Thursday, December 29, 2011

After 21 months of praying and waiting our house has SOLD! (hence the reason for the lack of blog activity this past month). It's been a pretty crazy Christmas break. We've had two and half weeks from the time of the offer until we need to be out. Closing is tomorrow and hopefully the last of several trips to a storage facility.
As soon as things settle down next week I will post some pictures of our December activities, Christmas activities and the whole moving process.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Christmas Palooza

Christmas Palooza (our created day set aside for traditions and celebrating the start of the advent season) seemed to come upon us so fast this year. We were out of town a couple days for Thanksgiving and then poof there it was. We usually start off the morning with some delicious fresh baked's a good thing I had pumpkin scone dough in the freezer. 

We spent the rest of the morning selecting the perfect tree

And the afternoon decorating it. Sadly, Jack had a birthday party in the afternoon and with Max sleeping it was just me and my girl.
The past few years we've had a pizza picnic for dinner but who can pass up BOGO at Qdoba?

and so we ended the evening with pj's and for the first time watching 'Elf'

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Monday, November 28, 2011


Here's a little snip-it of Thanksgiving...
My mom had the kids over the weekend before to do a little thanksgiving crafting.

Over the holiday we spent two nights with Josh's family at this little house in the middle of nowhere. Friends of his parents graciously let us stay. The outside doesn't look like much, but the inside was totally of those where the refridgerator looks like just another cupboard and the dish washer like a kitchen drawer...It was beautiful inside
And because Instafriday was replaced with black friday...

 Ellie and my niece Kennedy were taking turns being the photographer as we enjoyed a little fresh air. I think I had over 100 pictures to delete by the time they were done, but it wasn't for nought. I think they got some keepers.

Friday, November 18, 2011


This week Ellie found old "footie" pjs of Jacks and the hat I pulled out for Max to wear this winter. This girl couldn't be happier with her brothers' stuff.

riding shoulders to the Rockford football playoffs

Oh sweet face, he looks so much like Jack did

Loving leaves!

life rearranged

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Family Love

Where did the time go? Look how big they are! First grade already! I'm living out of my car back and forth to school so much. 
Life seemed so simple with the kids not in school. I could hang out at the house all day crafting, playing, cooking, cleaning, my choice. I loved those days and sometimes wish myself back there. There are certainly things I don't like about school age, but the thing I love the most is watching them learn...everything. It is amazing how much they soak up daily. More often I find myself saying "I never learned that in school." Recently we've found ourselves during our morning prayer (in the sunroom or in the car before school) praising and thanking God for our mind and our brains that we learn so much and use our knowlege to serve him and bless others.

parent teacher conferences this week...Jack's teacher had them all write a little note. He specifically asked if he could write to all of us instead of just parents. It's so sweet, I think this is one we'll keeping around for a while :)

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Deal of the Day

I truly enjoy after Holiday shopping and all the great deals and discounts. 
Halloween 2012...I couldn't resist. For $5 my Max will be Max!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Vader, a cat and a cowboy

Of course, lots of fun 'trick or treating' on Monday.

Eleanor brought along one of her friends from school this year.

This girl loves her brother soooo much! If I had a nickel for everytime I said "leave your brother alone" or "Ellie, put him down"... She just can't get enough of him and is always trying to grap and wrestle or pull him on top of name it! It really is sweet how she loves him. I love it, but sometimes it drives me crazy :)
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Somehow I totally missed posting about ArtPrize.
For those who don't live in Grand Rapids and are unaware of this super cool, take over the city art competition, you should check it out... 
ArtPrize is a completely open competition to any artist in the world who can find space and open to anyone who wants to create a venue. The winner is chosen by popular vote. It completely takes over the downtown area for over two weeks and it seems like during that period I hardly had a conversation that didn't talk about art in some way. 
Eleanor's favorite was 'Glitter Girl.'  Made from thousands of multicolored sequence pinned to a board

This guy painted a canvas live every night and kept adding them throughout the week.

Behind Ellie is a field of flowers that was made from plastic water bottles painted with acrylic paints.
There were tons of really cool pieces this year. I wish I taken more photos. 

'Grizzlies on the Ford'
One of the top ten finishers and a kid's favorite was these giant grizzly bears carved only with a chain saw. There were about 10 of them all in around a the fountain at the Ford Museum.

1582 Artists
38811 Registered voters
33858 Activated voters
0 Votes this hour
383106 Total votes placed

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My Breakfast

One of my favorite things about fall is all the seasonal baking I get to do. I have quite a sweet tooth and so as I try to teach my kids to enjoy the healthy fruits and veggies, they will certainly get their fill of apple pie, zucchini bread, pumpkin whatever and so on. Last year I shared one of my new found favorites the Pumpkin Scone. In case you missed that one, you can find it here. So there it is, and if it wasn't so indulgent I could probably eat three every morning :)

Friday, October 21, 2011


This is all I could get for all three...not our best work

Just enjoying a beautiful Sunday afternoon at the farm complete with hay ride, corn maze, play ground, donuts, apples and pumpkins. Have I ever mentioned I think fall is my favorite season!

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Red Sharks

Soccer season is now well under way. Josh, who volunteered to be an assistant coach some how was made the only coach for Jack's team. It seems like such a small commitment having two practices a week and then a game on Saturday...I don't even want to think about what high school might look like with 3 kids potentially in sports and extra-c activities - CRAZY!

We are constantly putting chapstick on Jack's lips. This is where you'll find his tongue most of the time on the field.
The next few pictures capture a celebration of Jack's first goal this season. It was so cute to see him go sprinting over to his daddy to celebrate.

Jack's cousin Hailey also plays on another team. It's funny how when they are together how much they talk about when their teams will play against oneanother. It should be a fun game to watch...Look for a report after October 22 :)
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Saturday, September 10, 2011

Last days of summer

Before there was school, there was the weekend...Labor Day weekend.
Something about the end of summer makes me a little camera happy too. The way things worked out this summer there were very few times when all the kids were there together.
I love to see all the memories made here, my favorite place on earth :)

As you can see on the bottom right, we are training up some good workers for taking the dock out.

These pictures above, brought back the memories like a flood. As kids we used to have races and play 'olympic' games every night after dinner. Uncle Ben was a great coach here and rounded everyone up for a relay around the house...all in line from littlest to biggest.
We laughed so hard...they were taking it so seriously. The smiles and determination on their faces says it all. Thanks to Allison for the great action shots.
"Goodbye Higgins Lake"
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Not much of a story here. Eleanor off to Preschool.
This being her second year there was absolutely no fear or hesitation. She had a great first day and can't wait to go back.
So it was 9am on Friday morning and I was remembering what it was like to have just one kiddo...I think I'm going to like this year :)

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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

First Grade

It's a strange thing to let them realize that you won't spend the majority of the day with them anymore and to trust their hearts and minds to so many others...
Other than being completely exhausted after a full day of school and an hour of soccer practice, Jack had a great first day. We already love his new teacher and look forward to all that this year holds. We trust that even though we loosen our grips a bit, the Lord is establishing Jack's steps.
Proverbs 16:9 "In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps."

Jacks idea to take a picture of the "Goad boys"
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