HAPPY VALENTINES

kevin has come a long way. i love to remind him of the gift he gave me our first valentines. we were poor college students, engaged to be married. we set a budget to spend on each other. $10 each.

back at his apartment we exchanged gifts. he brought out his pillow. on it, in black permanent marker, he had scrawled “I love you!”, and sprayed it with his cologne. with difficulty i kept myself from laughing at it. “Look inside”, he said. inside was deathcab for cutie’s newly released cd, which i knew he was more eager to have than me.

here we are 8 valentines later and i can now look forward to his valentine gifts. today he made pink chocolate chip pancakes with fresh strawberries for all of us this morning. and gave me a dozen of the cutest valentines cupcakes to enjoy over the next few days.

Yum 🍥

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Happy Valentine's Day- celebrating w/adorable cupcakes from Sweet!

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happy valentines day!

STACKED MOTHERS RING

we have entered a new era here. all the babies have been born. we are complete. no more members to join for at least another 10 years when they get to marriage age. i am proud of my 5 sons and all that they are and will become.

as i thought about this last week, while anticipating baby adam’s arrival, i decided i needed something physical to display like a name tag telling the world what i have that is so valuable to me.

my mom had mentioned a handstamped, birthstone mothers necklace. but as i thought about it. i am a bit of a necklace collector and like to coordinate my necklace to what i’m wearing.  i worried a mothers necklace would not get enough wear time. i wanted something i would wear everyday.

i also ruled out bracelets, because they can get in the way and i don’t see myself wearing them unless i’m dressing up.

a ring seemed like the way to go. i’m always good at wearing my wedding ring and don’t often add in other rings on my hands. i can dedicate my left hand to my husband and my right to my boys. together they equal the most important people to me in this world.

i figured i would go with birthstones, as is the tradition. but as i pictured how all their birth stones would look together (blue, red, white, purple) i wasn’t feeling it. nor did i think a purple gem really represents a boy, ya know?

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so i thought something like this could work, with just blue gems (blue=boy)

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but then i stumbled across these adorable initial heart rings on etsy. they are tiny enough that i can stack all 5 initials with varied bands in-between and fit all my boys on my ring finger.

il_570xN.693541211_3ulvsimple but i think i will love it.

 

NEW YEAR’S EVE

happy new year!

we started our NYE festivities at 8pm and every hour til midnight i did a ballon drop. i’d dump a garbage bag of balloons over the boys and say “happy new year!” and one of them got the chance to choose a ballon to pop- inside each ballon was an activity we’d do together.

ezra, my sleep lover who comes to me about 7:30 every night and tells me he wants to go to bed, lasted til 10:45.

i was very impressed by enoch’s stamina- he almost made it! about 11:45 i noticed he was nodding off as he lay next to me.

both orion and joey made it to the new year and we went out in the front yard and watched all the fireworks going off in our neighborhood, bundled in blankets.

i haven’t set any new year’s resolutions. as i read through my list of resolutions for 2014 last night, (i did well on 4 out of 9 of them) they kinda depressed me… seeing all the things i meant to do during the year that didn’t happen. made me feel anxious about how quickly a year passes and the time is just gone.

so here is to a resolution-free 2015, it’ll be gone before i know it!

YEAR IN REVIEW CARD

i remember as a kid reading through a 3 page or so handwritten, black and white photocopied family newsletter that one of my mom’s friends from a previous place we had lived sent her for the holidays. it had grainy pictures i could barely make out. but i thought it was kind of a cool idea. so fast forward 20 years and i am for the first time ever doing a family newsletter for our family! and since this is 2 decades later, it is virtual, typed, and in full color baby!!

May you find ways to adore the Lord this season and as you do, fill your home with love, peace, & joy.

year-in-review-edit

MY LITTLE BROTHER

about a month ago kevin had me listen to a song that reminded me of my little brother duane. made me cry. as i saw his birthday approaching me on the calendar i decided to put the song to a slideshow of him i made a couple years ago for my mom. the song makes it more for us siblings.

today he would have been 25. can’t wait to see him again someday. i hope he’s learning and growing lots on the other side.

Duane, my brother

i wasn’t living at home anymore when the turmoil that led to his death really became all consuming. but my mom wrote it all down.

CHECKLIST FOR AN 18 MONTH OLD

enoch is 18 months old now and oh the places he goes!

a ride in the laundry basket, whee!

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there are all these new things i’m having to keep track of to keep him safe and limit the amount of times i say no. it is a chore!

1. keep my bedroom door closed so he doesn’t mess with the printer, the router, the mirror, the window, or the fan

2. figure out how to keep him out of the oversized drawers in the kitchen where i keep my glass bakeware

3. keep rubber bands on all cabinets since the child proof locks don’t work on them because of the style (put rubber bands back on after 3 year old takes them off for fun, grr)

4. keep the rolly coffee table pushed away from the TV cabinet so he doesn’t climb up and touch the TV

5. watch for him climbing on the table, no realistic way to stop him, so keep it clear of drinks to limit its intrigue

6. keep the small kitchen shelf full so he doesn’t climb up on it and turn on the garbage disposal

7. so glad he stopped trying to climb up the bunk bed in his room

8. keep both bathroom doors closed so he doesn’t turn on the sink

9. put the fan up after his nap so he doesn’t put more legos in it

10. don’t use glade plug-ins

oh and

don’t bother putting laundry in the hall laundry basket, he’ll just throw it out

good thing you don’t care too much about those DVDs he gets into every other day

thank goodness he can’t open doors yet!

HE WORKS SLOWLY

this is an amazing yet simple story of a man’s journey, culminating in a prayer over hot dogs that changed his life.

God is ever so subtle, until those moments when He envelops us.