Sunday, December 26, 2010

Saturday, December 18, 2010

If I can do it...

anyone can. I made this coffee filter wreath today. If you know me, you know I'm not good at arts and crafts, so I'm kinda proud of this little project.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Bead for Life

My friend Katie introduced me to an amazing organization called Bead for Life. Because they can say what they are about better than I can, in a nutshell...

"Bead for Life creates sustainable opportunities for women to lift their families out of extreme poverty by connecting people worldwide in a circle of exchange that enriches everyone"

Women in Uganda make beautiful beaded jewelry made from tightly woven recycled paper. Then the Bead for Life headquarters sells the jewelry online, and ships it around the world for people to host parties. All the proceeds go directly back to support the women. Plus, bead for life provides training in money management and small business skills while teaching a trade. Love it.
So my house has looked like a bead retail store for the past week. Just got it all boxed up to send back. Grand total sold... $955.00 A big thanks to everyone who bought jewelry!

To find out more:

Friday, December 10, 2010

That's what friends are for

Some friends planned a dinner at Adrian's (one of my favorite restaurants) for my birthday. Love this picture and the friendships it represents. We stayed until they turned the lights off in the restaurant, and we had to leave. So thankful for these gals.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Jingle Bell Run

Whew, I am beat. My dear friend Jess (and her dog Poppy) and I braved the cold this morning to participate in the Arthritis Foundation's Jingle Bell Run. It was 4 miles, which was definitely a challenge for this post-baby girl. The run was along the river downtown, and it was a really pretty route. Now it's 8:00 p.m., and I'm ready for bed.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

My Birthday

I turned the big 32 this year. It was a special birthday because Alex had a fun day planned for me (as a surprise).He told me he had to work, but instead gave me a "day-off." From morning until the evening he had blocked out time for me to relax. The kids made me a sweet card, complete with a unicorn. I got some time to meander around the mall by myself, had a massage, and a date night (our anniversary was 5 days before my b-day). He knew just what I needed. Plus, my mom planned a scavenger hunt, which the kids totally loved. Not gonna lie, I don't think I'll ever outgrow a good scavenger hunt.

My favorite gift on the scavenger hunt was a nativity carved from wood that mom picked out for me on her trip to Israel.

Thanksgiving in Galveston

We drove down to Galveston for Thanksgiving this year. My mom's family rents beach houses every Thanksgiving, and we decided it would be fun to join them this year. The 11-12 hour drive went pretty well...thanks to the DVD players and Grammy entertaining the two older kids in the back seat. We met Austin and Molly and their two kiddos there. So thankful for the chance to catch up with my cousins, aunts, and uncles. I wish we could see each other more. I have memories of my older cousins taking care of/playing with me, and now their kids are doing the same with mine. I love it. We ate turkey, played on the beach, did a little window shopping, and played Bingo with around 35 people and two table of prizes. Great memories. Plus, my sweet niece Lena turned 1 year old over the holiday.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Trip to KC

The kids and I took a little trip to Kansas City to see family. We also got to see a good friend while we were there. The kids love their cousins, and played non-stop. My sis-in-law is a fantastic host, and we had a fun and relaxing couple of days. They just moved in to a beautiful new house. We ended up being there the same time as Alex's parents, so the kids got to spend time with their grandparents too.

Lydia and Gran

Owen and Oliver

Kate and Meredith

Friday, November 12, 2010

Play Date

A couple of my gracious friends occasionally invite me to join their weekly play dates. Today, I finally returned the favor. The kids had fun and played so well together, which gave us mamas some time to talk. Got a couple of cute pictures, just sad I am missing my other friend and her two cute girls who came over also. And the boy to girl ratio... a little off scale. Miles and Oliver were a bit out numbered, but I don't think they minded.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

School vs.School vs.School

I'm going to put myself out here, and share a little about the last year or so in this thing called, "choosing a school." Sounds simple, right? Kids have been being educated for years either at home or within a formal institution. As our kids get older, and as our friends kids get older, school choice has become a topic of more conversations than I'd like to admit. It seems so loaded. Public, private, home school, when to send your child to school, whole day, half name a few options. I am honestly so worn out with the weight of all these decisions, and really, we haven't even made one yet (except for Oliver's two day a week preschool, which I over-thought too). I'm in an internal cycle of not knowing what is best for our kids, educationally speaking. I flip flop in my mind almost daily, and it goes something like, "I think it would be best for our kids to attend____________(fill in the blank) because _____________________ (fill in the blank)." Oh, and throw in the occasional urge to home school in the mix too. Plus, I'm trying to plan out K-12 for all my kids, and the Lord may return before we even get to that stage:)

My point, although I know the school we choose is important, I know it's more important to seek what the Lord has for our family and let him lead the way step by step. Maybe we won't know where Oliver will go to kindergarten until it's almost game time. For a planner like me, it's difficult, but I think that's what I'm being asked to do. A day at a time, step by step. Um, I see a pattern evolving in my life.

How Big is Lydia?

SO BIG! She loves this. It's that age old game, and when we bring her hands up in the air, she gets the biggest smile. I love her. She is so pleasant.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Day 13

Today marks day 13 of Alex being gone. We are definitely ready for him to be home. You could say this week has been "interesting." Monday morning the kids and I went out to the garage to get in the car for a play date. I opened the door to start the car and saw the the passenger's side window was shattered. The car was in the garage with no sign of breaking and entering and nothing was taken. Thankfully, I don't think it was a break in. Probably just a random, "I'm on my own with three kids, of course the window decides to break into small pieces" thing. We all went back inside, I called around and found a place that could get us in immediately to fix it. We drove there (luckily it was close)with glass continuing to crack and fall inside and out of the car. What a sight in the waiting room...four dum-dums, two waters, two trips to the bathroom,one t.v. that got every channel but a kids one, and $135 later, the window was fixed and we were on our way.

Then yesterday as I was walking up the steps to our house with Lydia in my arms, I tripped. Fortunately, I caught Lydia and shielded her fall only to cut open elbow and hurt my knee. The Meredith laughed, which added a little insult to injury. At least the baby wasn't hurt. Yep, it was totally one of those falls when I looked behind me to see if anyone saw how graceful it looked.

So yes, I am ready to do the two parent thing again.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

A Sweet Reminder

Alex emailed the kids and I this photo today, as a sweet reminder that he loves us, even though he has to be far away. At least I think that's him...he's kind of unrecognizable:)

Saturday, October 23, 2010

I get by with a little help from my friends...and family

Alex has been traveling so much lately, and my friends and family have totally stepped in to help me. I'm so thankful, and I don't know what I would do without them.

Pa likes to hold Lydia, and she likes him too.

My littlest girl turned three months this week.

My parents took the kids to a nature center while I was at baby shower. They had a great time. I love this picture they took through the aquarium.

For those of you wondering...yes, Meredith does pick out most of her clothing ensembles.

Take the road less traveled.....

Saturday, October 16, 2010


Last night my dad took me and the two older kids back to my hometown football game. It just so happened to be homecoming night. I grew up in a town thirty minutes from Wichita. Population: 2,000. Yep, everybody knows everybody. Most of the 75ish people I graduated with I went from kindergarten through twelve grade with. Lots of memories (mostly good:) and flashbacks last night swirled around my head. It's been 13 years since I've been back to a football game. It was perfect fall weather and the kids had a blast watching the game, the band, the cheerleaders, but mostly eating popcorn, suckers, and running around free by the field.

Can you tell I'm feeling nostalgic? I ran in to some friends that I hadn't seen in a long time. Funny how I'm almost 32, but when I see friends I grew up with, I feel like I'm 17 the movie. Being around the school spirit, everyone dressed in blue, and walking in the bleachers where everyone knows each other definitely gives me a warm feeling. Don't get me wrong, I love Wichita, and the community God has given us. I guess being back in my hometown made me more aware of many of the little things I took for granted.

Now that I have kids, I find myself wanting the same things for them...friends they've known all their lives, teachers who know the whole family, opportunities to be involved in everything from band to basketball, and a casual atmosphere.

After all the above, one would think we're going to pick up and move back. Not in the plans, but more than anything, being back just made me thankful. Thankful for my childhood and all the good memories it has afforded me.

Oh, and on the way there I told Meredith and Oliver that they were going to get to see the track that I used to run races on. To which Meredith quickly replied, "Now you a mom" Like, give it up mom, now you couldn't make it one lap around. My kids keep me humble.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Pumpkin Patch

Our family got to go along with Oliver's preschool class this morning to the Applejack Pumpkin Patch. This is our third year to visit, and the kids always have a blast! The weather was perfect, and we enjoyed ourselves.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Tim..berrrr (or whatever you say when a tree falls)

This weekend was filled with work and some fun too. Alex returned home after a 10 day trip. Whew...glad to have him home for a week. Saturday we went to town cutting down trees and planting two new ones. Alex got antsy while waiting on the chainsaw to arrive with my dad, so he pulled a Paul Bunyan on the tree. Oliver had the time of his life helping load the trailer with logs and branches. Plus, it was so good for him to spend time with his daddy. He's had a hard time with how much Alex has to be gone lately, so it was much needed time for the two of them. I forgot to take a picture of the ones we planted, but they are really pretty Aristocrat Pear Trees. I never thought I would be so excited about trees.

Today after church, we went out to the Unruh farm to have lunch and spend the day with Alex's parent's and aunt and uncle visiting from Houston. Forgot my camera, or I'd have a picture of them to post. Snapped of few photos of the kiddos before church, and we even caught Lydia with a smile on her face.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Three Babies at Three Months

Ok, so I have a lot of time on my hands these days once the kids go to bed, but I love trying to figure out who babies/kids resemble. Here are my three, each at about three months old. It's been fun for me to go back through pictures and remind myself what Oliver and Meredith looked like around Lydia's age. One thing's for sure, none of them got the "hair gene."

Our Little Munchkins

Oh, these three....I love them, and they keep me on my toes.

Oliver is in preschool this year two days a week and loves it. He is an outside boy and has a big imagination. He likes to play games on the computer, and asks LOTS of questions.

Meredith is our little firecracker. The smile on her face tells it all. She loves the outdoors too, and will swing for hours and hours on the swing set. She loves an adventure, and she changes her clothes a couple times a day.

We are three for three with thumb-suckers. Miss Lydia found her thumb a couple weeks ago. She has started smiling and cooing more, and definitely likes to sleep in her little crib.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Bumbo

Quite possibly my favorite "kid gear" invention ever. We put little Lydia in it the other day for the first time. It was hard for her to keep her head up, she loved sitting in it.