Monday, July 13, 2015

Happy 9th, Finley!

My precious girl is NINE today!!! How in the world is this her last year in single digits!?! She has been a blessing to us since the day she was born! I wish you 99 more birthdays! Love you!!!

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Ceta Canyon '15

If you want to know what it feels like for your heart to be outside your chest, then put your firstborn child on a bus and watch it drive out of town. Mama Smart had to cut the apron strings let me tell you. It's just hard to let this precious little person you've done every single thing for and loved more than anything in this world, get on a bus and leave. Prayer. It takes lots of prayers. 

 Slade, Bob, and Preston packing all their junk under the bus.

And the whole group headed to Ceta Canyon. On the plus side, he made it home safely and he loved his week. He told me that he didn't really miss us, and wish he could have stayed another week. I say that's the sign of a great camp when you don't want to leave! Third trip to Ceta Canyon-check!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Braces, Fireworks, Anniversaries, & Fun!

It is July! How is this possible??? I want to cry because a month of summer is gone. Sighhhhhh. Whether we like it or not, we've started July out with a bang! Hello 4th of July fireworks! Ha!

 We went to see Inside Out in 3D. Loved, loved it! Even great for adults! I just don't usually love kids movies, but this was a great one! Slade went too, but he was already in the car.

 Finley was super pumped to get her top expander AND her top braces off!!! Yay! She's had her share of tears and pain, but she looks so happy. It really is extraordinary what they are able to do with teeth. They are so straight on the top now. This was phase #1. She will wear a retainer at night now and she still has the bottom expander. They will now wait for her to loose more teeth and her mouth to grow more till phase#2.  I think they were worth EVERY. DARN. PENNY!!!

 We kept our sweet friend, Laney, one day and she needed a matching side bun like Finley.

 Poolside snack break with Gunnar, Logan, & Laney.

 My sweet honey and I celebrated our 14th wedding anniversary on June 29th. I like to call this the photo BK (before kids). Yes, before our three children, we were so fresh and well rested..........

 We got a sitter and went out and had a nice, quiet dinner. I did not have to cut up one thing or clean up a spill. It was glorious.

 I had to take pic of myself with makeup and hair done. It is few and far between this summer.

 In other exciting news, we traded in the Burb. It served us well since Gunnar was a baby but it was a beast to back up in tight spots. I will always be grateful for the years it gave me. Many children, groceries, dirt, and food morsels were carried in this car.

 And 21 inches smaller(which is HUGE when one is backing out of the grocery store!) meet our new friend, Smokey. I drove over Friday and picked her up. She's a GMC Denali and she is very nice and sassy.  Yay! I can even call people with my voice!

 Happy 4th of July!!! Gunnar, Logan, Laney, Camille, & Finley. Slade and Payton were running around somewhere.

 Watching the fireworks show.

 My patriotic table scape which is code for pulling things out of the closet 15 minutes before our friends arrived to eat dinner. Nana's red tablecloth and a few blue vases from my hutch. Done.

 Beth and I enjoying the show and mosquitos and children running amuck.

And last but not least, I made mom's YUMMY potato salad. It was soooo GOOD!!!
No matter what, we still have the greatest country in the world. God Bless the USA!!!
(P.S. I do have a twelve year old son. He does live with us. I have no idea why he's allergic to my camera.)

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Art Show

In May, Finley had an art show where she takes classes. She was able to pick two pieces of art to display at her show. She picked two favorite canvases.

 Proud of her work!

 This one is one of my favorites.

 Cita even happened to be in town so she was able to go to the show.

Finley and Campbell taking part in the yummy refreshments!!!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

On Top

I'm the King of the World!!!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Nana's China Hutch

We've been up to lots of stuff. It's this little thing called LIFE! Seeing that I have neglected this blog this past school year, it just really doesn't matter where I start at this point. So here it goes.....

So I was able to get my grandmother's hutch when we cleaned out her house. I played with her dishes in this hutch for hours and hours growing up. It is a little piece full of memories for me. It also sat in her dining room where our family shared family dinners, birthdays, and many Christmas dinners for as long as I can remember (See above photos). Good, good times! The food was good and the company was even better. Ahhh, to remember the fun times.

And because my sweet husband is just, well, sweet, he took a trailer four hours down to pick up this hutch and her piano for me and then drove four hours back. He's kinda good like that. I knew I had a spot for it. Of course, I had to put my touch on this little hutch. After lots of elbow grease and late nights, I was able to transform it in to a piece for my home.


And AFTER!!! 

Yes, it's purple. And it's awesome. And it has lots of goodies inside that mean the world to me. It sits where my kitchen table sits. Now it's going to start a new chapter in my kitchen. Where the food is good and the company is even better. I hope that many family dinners, birthdays, and holiday dinners will be held in it's presence. Time to make more fun memories.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Easter Past

Easter 2011....Finley age 4.........sighhhhhhh

Monday, January 5, 2015

Beautiful Hands

I lie in my bed at night and I think about my grandmother's hands. They were smallish and dainty. They had the marks of age, but those marks didn't take away from the elegance of them. And she had really great nails. They had little ridges in them and they were always filed and she sometimes used a mauve pink color. My sister and I agree that she had the best nails. I remember laying with my head on her lap in the church pew on Sunday mornings and she would rub ever so lightly on my face with her hands. I loved that. It never crossed my mind at the time, but they were were just so pretty. I now see the beauty of her hands.

When it snows, I love to look outside at night. When there are no tracks and there is a blanket of pure white. It sparkles and it's so quiet and peaceful. My breath is smoky cold.  I've always thought I could live where it snows because I really enjoy how the snow covers up all the imperfections. It's just smooth and silky. But I realized this weekend that I like it when it snows because it's quiet and peaceful. The snow usually brings ice here and everyone slows down. People stay indoors, some stay home from work. Cars stay in garages. Outings are cancelled. We all slow down. We actually stop to see the beauty of the fresh fallen snow.

We forget the beauty in things because life gets in the way. We are all just human and there's bills to pay, meals to cook, things to learn, kids to teach, houses to clean, etc., etc., etc. When we went to the beach this summer, I knew I was seeing beauty. The moon would reflect on the ocean at night and it was mesmerizing. I could have sat there and looked out on the ocean for a hundred years and never gotten tired of it. But lately I've realized there's beauty in the simplest things around me. I love how the water runs off the edge of our pool. I love the color of the pansies in the front bed that Kyle plants. I love my kids long lashes when they are asleep. A beautiful Californian sunset took my breath away when my friend sent it to me on my phone tonight. Stunningly beautiful. As beautiful as the snow.

A River Runs Through It is one of my favorite movies. The story touches me, but I fell in love with the scenery of that movie. It is absolutely beautiful. The boys grow up fishing in this awesome river in Montana and every time I watch it, I'm just taken. I feel like I'm there and every time I watch it I cry at the end. That place is beauty.

As we've cleaned out her house, I've taken several glass pieces of my grandmother's home with me. And I find myself really, really looking at them. Mostly because it triggers a good memory for me. Memories are getting me by these days. But this morning when I was brushing my teeth, I started staring at this tiny green, depression glass ice cream sundae cup. It was in Nana's hutch all my life and I played with it but I guess I never really looked at how beautiful this dainty little glass was. It sits on my sink now and we use it every day. Who says I cannot use this beautiful green cup every single day. I think I will. It is really beautiful.

My grandmother taught me lots of things. She taught me kindness and humility. She taught me forgiveness and generosity. She taught me love. But now that she is gone, she is still teaching me things. When you loose someone, your mind goes to those places that you haven't thought of in some time. You long to see them, so you rely on your memories. Memories of beautiful hands. Even though she's gone, she's still teaching me to see the beauty in things.