Saturday, March 30, 2013

he has won me

"If you were really the Son of God, you could just climb down off that cross!" they said.
And of course they were right. Jesus could have just climbed down.
Actually, he could have just said a word and made it all stop. Like when he healed that little girl.
And stilled the storm. And fed 5,000 people. But Jesus stayed.
You see, they didn't understand. It wasn't the nails that kept Jesus there.
It was love.
-the Jesus Storybook Bible

{wishing you all a very happy Easter weekend. remember how He loves you. ~k}

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

not-forgotten pictures and things my kids say

Sometimes I come across a photo or two (or a hundred really) that I love but never did put in a blog post. I rarely print anything and I'm well over five years behind in making photo books so this blog is essentially our ongoing family album. One of these days I hope to actually turn it into hardbound books for the kids to flip through and enjoy. There are a few sites out there that claim it's an easy thing to do but so far every time I've begun the process I've quit soon after, discouraged by the time and especially the money it is clearly going to require. Recently however, baby #4's fast approaching due date seems to have lit a fire under me. I've begun looking back through the files and putting together some simple digital albums for the kids -I even managed to make four year old Kate a baby book! It's a start anyway.
The following post is a result of this small attempt to organize and catch-up. A collection of lost-and-found photos and random things I wrote down in the past year hoping to remember...
them, summer '12
A conversation with Tristan...
tristan:  "Mom, where are we going?"
me:  "Crazytown."
tristan (totally serious): "But I thought Crazytown was in North Carolina?"
dad: "Son, that's the amazing thing about Crazytown. Wherever we go, there it is."
thing 1
A string of questions from the boy in the backseat. I'm usually puzzling over how to answer his first question as two or three more come out of his mouth...
"Mom, do sharks have blue tongues? And wouldn't it be crazy if this was new york?!
Wouldn't it be cool if you could kick a ball all the way around the world and it would hit you in the back?"
crazy katie
In the backyard with Kate...
"Mom, I'm watering the ants to make mud so the ants will see it and say, 'ooh chocolate!' and then they will crawl into it and DIE!!!"
Cuddling with Kenna who just tripped and fell down while brushing her teeth, injuring the inside of her mouth...
"Mom, I wish you could get inside there and kiss it."
(I probably said something like "Me too sweetie, I'm so sorry." When really I was probably thinking, "Gross, kid! Get over it!")
kate age 2
And a few of my favorite non-words that I find too cute to correct and get a little sad to hear them letting go of...
thingurs = fingers (kenna)
binahind = behind (kate: "hey, I'm right binahind you!")
valigator = elevator (kate)
turch = church (kenna)
rolling balls = meat balls (kate)
controlmote = remote control (kate)
1, 2, 3...
And these last pictures reminded me of the lone daffodil blooming in my front yard last week. The lone daffodil that I had planned on taking a picture of. The lone daffodil that was plucked from it's stem and brought to me with a proud smile. Whatever you say to kids about picking flowers from neighbor's beds, or stomping on them outside the church, or leaving them on the plant to be pretty will go in one ear and out the other every time.
But perhaps they are better off for it...

Friday, March 22, 2013

green hope

More beautiful thoughts from Christie are posted over here today. I took this picture of her daughter, Lily, on a green Spring day we spent exploring the Virginia countryside. Oh how I love Spring.
Springs reminds me that miracles are possible. Spring is hopeful.
In her blog, Christie talks of Spring in the dead of Winter. She named her summer-born daughter for it. I read and I open my eyes and I look around. I look deeper. And I see miracles, I know hope. Reading books, baking bread, asking questions, raking dead leaves, weeping sorrow, feeding babies -every moment of life is saturated and dripping with the green hope of a living Savior. He is risen and I want to live a believing life.

"Oh! May the God of green hope fill you up with joy, fill you up with peace, so that your believing lives, filled with the life-giving energy of the Holy Spirit, will brim over with hope!"
Romans 15:13, The Message

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


lemon blossoms
“Is the spring coming?" he said. "What is it like?"...
"It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine...” 
― Frances Hodgson BurnettThe Secret Garden
spring reads
“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.” 
― Rainer Maria Rilke
blueberry blossoms!
“She turned to the sunlight
    And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
    "Winter is dead.” 
― A.A. MilneWhen We Were Very Young
considering the garden...

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

it's a...!

it's a boy
Boy! The big brother couldn't be more thrilled. After praying for almost three years (sometimes through tears -but don't tell him I told you), my sweet nine year old is getting the little brother he hoped for. And I will be reminding him of those prayers when baby brother starts crawling into his room to destroy Lego creations and eat paperbacks.
The rest of us are equally excited, although poor Kate is a bit confused. She is sure we will "get the baby" any minute now and not till August is apparently difficult concept for a four year old to grasp.
Naming a child with older, opinionated siblings in the house is also proving to be a fun experience. We haven't decided anything yet, but the kids have offered up some really great ideas. Tristan actually wrote me a whole list of boys names the day he found out a baby was on the way. The girls' input has been less helpful but lots of fun. Their list includes, Milk Face, Curious George Campbell, Leddy, Kejal, Bana, and Peter.
For now, we are all content to lovingly call him baby brother...

Saturday, March 9, 2013

an afternoon in the sand

Shawn was texting me pictures from Busch Gardens this morning (because the same job that drops him off in Middle Eastern deserts sometimes drops him off at amusement parks -it does have it's perks now and then.) So I thought I should get out on this pretty Saturday and do something fun with the kids as well.
Also that would make much easier to keep ignoring the laundry that had taken over the living room.
Off to the beach we went.
We tried out another new kite. We dug holes in the sand. Tristan and Kenna built castles and Katie stomped on them, laughing. When I noticed sand castle building was only leading to trouble I started walking down the beach, calling them to follow.
And that's when we saw it. The Crater.
Someone had dug an invitingly huge and very deep pit. The kids ran to it, excited, but stopped short at the edge when they realized the hole had inhabitants and they were still there. An older couple and their picnic were situated on a blanket at the bottom.
I gently led the kids a ways away where they could run around on a flat area of packed sand. The sky was blank gray and the beach empty of people (except for the two hidden in the hole.) It looked as if they were running on the surface of the moon.
As we played, the girls making "sand angels" and Tristan giving me jump shots, Crater Couple left the beach and the kids happily invaded their space. Up and down like puppies they ran and climbed and jumped and slid in the cold sand. Kenna asked if we could camp out there tonight. I wasn't exactly prepared for camping in a sand pit so I let them play until we were all shivering in the setting sun and then dragged them back down the beach for home.
This morning, before our beach excursion, the kids had played with buddies down the street while I went on a nice long neighborhood walk with a friend. And before that we had lounged around in our pjs until 10am, eating cinnamon toast and reading books (well, I read books, they played Wii and watched movies.) We came home, used up all the hot water, ate macaroni and green beans and scrambled eggs and spinach...I didn't mind playing short-order cook tonight, I guess the fresh air got to me.
The laundry still hasn't been touched.
I'd say it was a Saturday well-spent for all of us and I think I'm going to make it a point to have a lot of Saturdays like this one over the next few months (except for the out-of-town husband part. We'd rather he join us next time.)

Thursday, March 7, 2013

just a thought

and more books
Is it not the great defect of our education today that although we often succeed in teaching our pupils "subjects",
we fail lamentably on the whole in teaching them how to think? They learn everything, except the art of learning.
-Dorothy Sayers, The Lost Tools of Learning

Monday, March 4, 2013

winter white drifts

...of sand, that is. Looking at the dunes, I started thinking about the snow piled up in a similar fashion around the homes of many friends and family to the north. We love snow and on rainy, muddy winter days stuck indoors, the kids dream about sledding in Kansas. I have trouble not being jealous of anyone experiencing a real winter, but I realize on days like this -sunny days, barefoot on the beach- that I am grateful. Or I need to be more grateful. I am thankful for sunshine and blue ocean and pockets full of sea shells. I'm thankful for trips to the park in short sleeves. I'm thankful for a low utility bill! And today especially, I'm thankful for the ability to holler, "everyone outside!" when things get a little too crazy in the house, and out they go, quickly, with no lost mittens to find or coats to wrestle into. Yes, for this, I am very thankful.

Friday, March 1, 2013

winter shore

winter chill
After a week of rain, we needed to escape. We needed to breathe deep, feel sunshine on our faces, dig bare toes in cold sand. It was like crawling out of a dark winter hole, standing there under that great big blue sky...
beach combers
We flew a kite in the chill wind. Well, we tried. Turns out stunt kites are not easy to fly but we gave it a good effort and Tristan sure made it look good...
let's go fly a kite
The girls can't resist ocean waves no matter how cold. I brought many towels, extra pants, warm socks. I tried not to stomp on their fun as I watched them, laughing and brave...
cold water! cold water!Pockets were filled (and I do mean filled) with shells. Today the dryer is rattling and bowl of sandy treasure sits on the table...
"look mom!"
Playing on that quiet shore, we felt fresh air and chill water wash away blues we didn't even know we carried. Tangled kite strings and sandy shoes and even the little one's fever bug couldn't dampen our spirits. We needed this.
love them * feb 28, 2013
And now today? Today is new.
Hello, March.
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