Sunday, December 25, 2011

Happy Birthday Gma Joyce!!

Happy Birthday To You
Happy Birthday To You
Happy Birthday Dear Gma Joyce
Happy Birthday To You!!!

We hope your day is as special as you!!!


Benji, Carolyn, Katie and John

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Friday, December 16, 2011

sugar and spice

Slowly but surely I'm working on getting the kids yearly pictures taken.  Nothing like waiting until the last month. 

My first intent was to wait for the fall colors.  They came and went while all 4 kids (and mom) were down and out with some bad bugs.  Then my camera went haywire.. it may or may not have been a result from being dropped once.  Or twice.  In between that, we've had bumps and bruises.  I debated on holding off until everyone is picture perfect.  But that day will never come.  Editing can tweak a few things out, then again, each bump, bruise and mark has a story to tell.  One that in time we'll forget, until we look back at the picture.

I've learned with 4 kids, pictures are a work in progress.  I take what I can get, when I can get them.  Last night the girls wanted to dress up, curl their hair and take pictures.  Who was I to stop them?  We did get some keepers.  And we still need to keep taking more shots.

Friday, December 9, 2011

happy 6th birthday larissa!

happy birthday to you
happy birthday to you
happy birthday dear larissa
happy birthday to you!!!

U. Benjamin, A. Heather
Benji, Carolyn, Katie and John

Saturday, December 3, 2011


I, selfishly, hesitate to post about this giveaway.  Because the less people that know about it, the better my chances are to win.  But thats not fair.  Not to mention I get another entry for posting :)

Head over and check out her giveaway.  How cool is that?

Friday, December 2, 2011

Little kids. Big muscles

We love the toasty warm heat that our wood stove gives us. 

The kids LOVE to stand on the air vent when the blower kicks on.  It gives little boys BIG muscles.

Monkey see, monkey do.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Benji's Party

He requested his cake picture be taken outside on the wood pile.  Only our kids. :)
He changed his mind about a million times.  Finally, he settled on a rice krispie horse.  It matched his western/cowboy theme perfectly.
10 kids + presents = a blur
Present from Boppa and Gma.  You're looking at one VERY happy, proud, anxious-to-use-it boy.
Our family.  Wild hair and looking in all directions.
The cake rice krispie horse.
The western town was the hit of the party.
 A neat way to give a gift of money.
It's hard to believe he's 8 years old already.  In 2 months exactly Carolyn will turn 7 years old!!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

hunting 2011

While the 9-day rifle hunt is over, hunting season is still going on.  Muzzle loader is up,  followed by a healthy dose of bow hunting.  Although after the weekend is up, the orange and camo tend to get put up as well.  At least in previous years at this house. 

We've got plenty of venison to process for the freezer.  Not as many as some years.  But really, that's all that matters: food in the belly.  (Besides the 'boys' having fun during hunting week.)

Daddy got a nice 8 point buck this past Saturday.  The little boys claimed it as theirs(Gma Linda took the following pictures)
These two got to tag along with the big guys a few times.  I'm not sure which was bigger:  their smiles or their stories! :)  To the boys it seems like an eternity until they can get their OWN license.  But for Mom and Dad that day will be here in a blink of an eye.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Meet Bluegill/Princess

We were recently given 2 kittens.  Jackie (whom I don't have a picture of) is a boyPrincess or Bluegill {depending on who you ask) is a girl.  Both are outside kitten's.  But they do find their way inside quite often.  Usually in some type of baby get-up.  Which both kitten's surprisingly put up with.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


We got our 1st snow of the season the past few days.  Each day it melted by noon, but each day it was enough to leave a thick white layer on everything.  Just enough to roll some snowmen.  Just enough to make the kids thrilled.  Mom didn't mind it too much either.  To be honest, the first snow is always exciting.  (It's the 486th snowfall that gets old).  At any rate the weather is predicted to be in/near the 50's the rest of the week- we could handle a little bit of snow.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Happy 8th Birthday Benji!!!

Happy Birthday To You
Happy Birthday To You

Happy Birthday Dear Benji 
 Happy Birthday To You!!!

It's hard to believe you're turning eight.  It was just yesterday you made us parents.  Now look at you.
You continue to love all things related to horses, cowboys, hunting, and your little brother.  No longer are a little boy.  But willing to snuggle when the time is right. 

While we'd love to have you stay little for awhile longer, we're excited to watch you learn new things.  It won't be long before you're going with Daddy to get your very own hunting license.

Happy 8th birthday Benji!!!

Dad, Mom, Carolyn, Katie and John

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Happy Birthday Boppa Ben!

happy birthday to you
happy birthday to you
happy birthday dear boppa ben
happy birthday to you!!!

Benji, Carolyn, Katie and John

Saturday, November 5, 2011

{together for 10}

There are a few dates that will always stand out to me.  Days that have special meaning.  Days that will not easily be forgotten.  Nov 2, 2001.  It was 10 years ago this weekend that I travel 3 hours across the state to see this guy.  Although I had met his parents before (when his brother married one of my friends), I didn't really know them, or vice versa.  Although I have a feeling they knew plenty about me before I even arrived.  I knew his brother and sister some.  Mostly from the weekend up north in August.  (Another time we're not likely to forget).

I remember having butterflies as I drove.  Thinking "what if?"  (Those feelings disappeared the moment I stepped out of the car)  I remember his Dad and him were standing at the end of the walkway when I pulled up.  I remember his Mom hugged me.  I remember I brought a homemade carrot cake, that was my 'soon to be' father-in-law's favorite cake, unknown to me.  We went camping.   His parents, us, his brother/wife, his sister/husband and Annie (my in laws German Shepherd pup).  There was hunting.  (I quickly was made aware just what hunting means to men of this family.)  There was a evening at the local restaurant- just the kids.  There was much laughing and joking.  I remember feeling at home.  With Benjamin.  With the just being 'there'.  I called in sick (used an extra PTO day) to work Monday and drove home Tuesday morning (I worked 2-11 at the time).  We already had plans made to be together on my next weekend off.  And the next one, and the next.  Then a wedding date was set.   And the rest, as they say, is history.

I remember so much more from that weekend, but I can't find a way to put it into words.  But it's with a smile on my face and happiness in my heart I look back at the memories we've created: on that weekend and since then.  10 years later.  Still together.  And he's out hunting.. again.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


I'm having a party....
  • A Pampered Chef catalog party that is. 
  • If anyone is interested in ordering let me know.  (For those that are local friends of mine, you can go to directly Ingrid's website and search my name under hostess)  Otherwise I can send you the link to order directly from my party online.
  • If you want to order, we'll figure out how to make it happen! :)
  • The party is open today through Nov. 14.
  • Typically, your order is shipped directly to me, then I distribute the items to you.  For a small fee, you can have the items shipped directly to you if you're not local.
  • Any questions... let me know.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Happy 9th Birthday Jacob!

happy birthday to you
happy birthday to you
happy birthday dear jacob
happy bithday to you!!

U. Benjamin, A. Heather
Benji, Carolyn, Katie and John

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Take Me Back Tuesday - October 2007

Benji: almost 4
John: 1 month old
Katie: 2
Carolyn: 3

Sunday, October 23, 2011

(another) picture-less updated

  • Our entire family has been battling this bug since the end of September.  Some had/have it worse than others.  Some barely got it.  Most were on medicine(s).  I haven't decided if it's better when Mommy and the kids are sick together.  Rarely do we all get sick at once, usually it's drug out-  It's made for looong days and nights.  Life carries on despite the sickness.  Only the most urgent tasks were accomplished.  But we survived this long, I'm sure we'll make it through.
  • On a brighter note, we were given two kittens.  Jackie (boy) and Princess (girl).  Both grey(ish) color.  They are outside cats.  Although they spend quite a bit of time inside.  They are quite tolerant of the kids 'affection'.  I'm not a big fan of cats.  Although kittens are adorable, and the kids think they are the greatest thing.  Whoever gets up first in the morning, goes out to snag his/her kitten and snuggle on the chair.
  • Hunting season is under way.  We're enjoying fresh vension thanks to Daddy and his gigantic longbowBenji is quite the small game hunter.  No squirrel is safe in our woods.  He got a bow/arrow for his birthday last year, and its quite the archer.  He loves to practice with the target.  Quite often in the early evening hours you'll find him outside, with his bow and arrow, just waiting for that big buck to stroll through.  He can hardly wait for the day he gets his own hunting licensce in his back tag.  (He currently is using Daddy's tag from a few years ago)  And yes, the (big) boys have spotted the BIG one nearby.. so the race is on.
  • We're beginning the birthday celebration.  5 birthdays in a little over 2 weeks.  We have at least one birthday every month until April.  Can we say PARTY?!  Benji will turn 8.  EIGHT. In a short while.  It seems like it was yesterday we just became parents.
  • For the 1st time in my life I canned.  Normally I freeze my applesauce, but was persuaded to can it.  It wasn't so hard.  Just time consuming.  I also made my 1st real pumpkin pie.  We're hooked.  I may have to get more pumpkins to cook up.
  • I promise to get my camera out this week.  Besides, now that the kids are perking up, we need to get our yearly fall pictures done.

Thursday, October 6, 2011


A good blogging friend is having a giveaway. 
Click here for details! 
Goat milk soap made fresh from Montana!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Thankful. Satisfied. Refreshed.

   I've tried hard to put into words my feelings of the past few days.  I just can't do justice to the way I feel within my heart.  As always, we left overflowing with thankfulness.  Refreshed.  Renewed.  Completely satisfied.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Happy 5th Birthday Meri Jane!

happy birthday to  you
happy birthday to you
happy birthday dear meri jane
happy birthday to you!!

Uncle Benjamin, Aunt Heather,
Benji, Carolyn, Katie and John

Friday, September 23, 2011

in a nutshell.

Any hopes of keeping my blog updated and current have offically been thrown out of the window.  In the near future I am going to give facebook the boot, so maybe I'll have a few extra minutes. :)

(thank you to my mil for emailing me her pictures)

 Our baby turned four.
I still can't believe he's four.  When asked how old he is, he'll typically smirk and say 'fourteen'.
  The tradition of blowing out the candles with (almost all the) cousins.
Roasting marshmallows with Daddy. 
Fun in the sun and sand with cousins, aunties and grandma.
We're plugging away with school.  Keeping busy with everyday life.  Looking forward to some very special days coming up.  That's about it.  In a nutshell.

Happy 1st day of fall!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

happy 4th birthday Wyatt

happy birthday to you
happy birthday to you
happy birthday dear wyatt
happy birthday to you!!!

Uncle Benjamin, Aunt Heather
Benji, Carolyn, Katie and John

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Happy 4th Birthday John!

happy birthday to you
happy birthday to you
happy birthday dear john
happy birthday to you!
I can't wrap my mind around that fact the my baby is four.  When he was born, Benji (our oldest) wasn't quite four himself.  Having 4 kids in under 4 years.. Looking back, I'm not sure what we were thinking or how we survived, but here we are. 
Just as with the other 3 kids, we couldn't imagine life without John Henry.  He completes our family, in more ways than one.  He is 'it' for us.  Forever our baby.  He's solid.  He's tough.  He's tender and sweet.    He pushes the limit.  He's goofy and silly.  He loves trains, always has.  He absolutely adores his big brother.  (And vice versa).  He's his Father's son in so many ways.  He has his Mommy wrapped around his pudgy finger.
Happy birthday to our not-so-little-anymore John!  We wish you a day as special as you are to us!

Daddy, Mommy, Benji, Carolyn and Katie

Monday, September 12, 2011

Happy Birthday Gpa Ray!


We hope your day is as special as you are.  Love and miss you!


***Dad's recovering very well from his accident.  His hand/arm is healing right on schedule.  Therapy is going well!***

Friday, September 9, 2011

not so exciting update

Summer is flying by.  I've slacked in updating my blog.  Not to mention I've slacked in taking pictures.  So a short boring update is all you get to reassure you we are alive and well.
  • Benji lost his 2nd (bottom) tooth sometime this summer.  (He's still not impressed his sister is beating him.  Each day he checks the progress of his not-so-loose top teeth.)
  • Carolyn lost her 4th tooth not too long ago.  It was the other front tooth, so she's without her front teeth. :-)
  • We started our (home) school for the year.  Benji: 2nd, Carolyn: 1st, Katie: Kindergarten, John: PreK (because of the age cut off, he wouldn't be able to go to 4K until next year.  I have a hard time holding him back.  He's eager, so I let him).  All 4 kids were ready to jump in head first this year.  Here's hoping the excitment continues.
  • My baby will turn F-O-U-R in just a few weeks.  That blows me away.  FOUR.  My baby. F-O-U-R!
  • Although the weather is warm (80*) and sunny right now, fall is right around the corner.  I love it for a variety of reasons: cooler weather, church convention, changing leaves, sweatshirts, the smell of the woodstove smoke, cups of hot cocoa, stews simmering in the crockpot. 
  • My husband could sum up fall in one word: HUNTING.  While it means that he'll be spending his free time in the woods or preparing for the woods, it does put meat in our freezer.  So I won't complain, too much.
So there you have it.  In a nutshell.  Our not so exciting update.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I {heart} NY

The other week, I was lucky enough to tag along with my husband while he did some shows in western NY.  I've only gone as far east as Ohio, so I added a few more states to my list.  We really enjoyed NY.  The whole trip was very spur of the moment, so our passports were safely tucked away at home.  Had I realized just where in NY we were going I would have grabbed them.  Regardless, we had a good time on the American side.

Familiar signs along our 14ish hour trip:  road construction and toll/turnpike signs.  Yee$$h.  There may be a reason we typically head west for vacations. :)
I had never been to NY, and if my husband had it was to deliver a load and head out.  Despite the large populations,  (We were by Buffalo, no where close to NYC) we loved the area.  People were friendly.  Land was beautiful.
Niagara Falls, NY
Lake Ontario
Stone wall/steps leading down to beach at Lake Ontario.  (At one time there was a hotel here.  It currently is a quiet park.)  In the blink of an eye we spent over two hours on a park bench, on top of this wall over looking the lake.  It was a small, tourist  town that was hidden to the world.
Lake Erie. 
We had a few hours to waste.  So we rented some lounge chairs from the beach hut.  It was a warm (80), sunny day, but the breeze wind from the water made it cool.  It was a wonderful, spur of the moment, mix-business-with-pleasure getaway for us. 
The gigantic Erie County Fair.  Lucky for us they had a Truck/Tractor Pull the day we were there.    As strange as it seems, I get (almost as) excited as my husband to watch the smoke, listen to the engines, seeing the dirt fly.  Good thing, considering my hubby and his brother have their own pulling tractor, so we're no strangers to the sound of engines revving.

While our getaway was short -n- sweet and very much needed/appreciated, we couldn't wait to get home to the kiddos.