Back to Work…

He’s home!

back 1

Daniel got back late Sunday night, so the girls didn’t get to see him until Monday.  That afternoon I got the call from my mom saying, “I’m sure glad Daniel’s home from Boston.”  Then we turned on the news.  Our hearts and prayers go out to you, Boston!

back 2

Being the daddy to 3 little girls, his welcome home from Boston was, of course, a tea party!

back 3

But, the sitting around and relaxing didn’t last long.  We finally started a big project we’ve been planning since November.  Our little office, (the former “nursery”), is getting a door and a floor!  Words cannot even express my excitement and joy over the prospect of a room dedicated to schooling and crafting.  No words.  None.

back 4

Daniel let the girls take the first swing!

back 5

Bye, bye window!  Hello door.

back 6

And, just like that the door was in.  It took 2 workers just one day.

back 7

His expression gives the sentiments of us all.  Can’t wait to show you more progress!  Hooray for fun projects!

The Best… Days 5 and 6!

I so wanted to post “the best” last night, but the week was wearing on me a bit, and I left the camera in Malachi’s room.  Most likely he wouldn’t have noticed me sneaking in, but this tired Mama wasn’t about to take the chance!

I have to say, focusing on the best this week has been a lot of fun.  I look back at the posts and smile.  But, being “optimistic” certainly did not help in my parenting skills.  I noticed the days that I was extra tired and didn’t spend much alone time in God’s Word, I was much less patient.  Conversely, the more time I spent in God’s Word and His presence, the more patience (and joy) I felt!  I know it seems obvious, but it really hit me hard this week.  I SO need my Jesus! More than coffee… more than cute pictures… more than calls from friends or fun crafts… and even more than having my husband home!  Without Him, I would not be pleasant.  Really.

Anyway, on with the best…

tbst 1

Homemade pizza and movie night is the best.  And so is this new way to make pizza I found on Pinterest.  I kid you not… grilling your pizza is the tastiest and fastest way to make pizza!  It is just like having a wood fire oven.  I believe I will be grilling pizza often now.  Very often.  Ok, I need to move on… I am drooling!

tbst 2

This salad dressing recipe is the best!  Well, it’s the one I’ve been using the most lately because it’s so easy to remember.  I just think it’s as “easy as 1-2-3!”  1 TBSP dijon, 2 TBSP oil, 3 TBSP vinegar — (plus salt and pepper to taste!)

tbst 3

My American Girls ecstatic to watch the American Girl “McKenna” movie are the best!

tbst 4

…And fresh chocolate chip cookies for dessert???  THE BEST!

tbst 5

Toddlers in jammies are the best! (Hence, leaving the camera in his room!)

tbst 6

Spontaneous trips to Ikea for nothing but napkins are the best!  (Hey, they have free coffee and 1 hour of free child care — it’s been 6 days; don’t judge me! 🙂 )

tbst 7

Yellow zucchini flowers are the best!

tbst 8

Rainy days and little boy smiles… the best!

tbst 9

Afternoon craft time is the best! (Especially on rainy days with tea and cookies!)

tbst 10

tbst 11

tbst 12

tbst 14

These little fairies and princesses they made are the best!

And, sitting in this clean, quiet house knowing my husband is on his way home is THE BEST!

The Best… day 4

I know you’re going to find this hard to believe, but last night someone broke into our house in the middle of the night, turned-on Malachi’s light making him scream, and then stole the peanut butter and escaped.  Seriously.  Ok, so maybe he didn’t steal the peanut butter.  (after searching for a bazillion minutes this morning, it finally turned-up in the veggie drawer.)  And, I suppose it is unlikely someone broke in last night since all the doors were locked and the dog didn’t bark.  But, I did hear Malachi scream at 3am, went to his room, and found his door was shut but his big bright light was on.  I was mystified and slightly terrified, to say the least.  The only thing I can think is that Allison was sleep walking again, went and turned on his light, then went back to bed… I don’t know!  Crazy, huh?  Then when I was looking for the peanut butter and couldn’t find it this morning, a crazy thought did come to my mind.  Funny what sleep-deprivation will do, right?

Anyway, I promised to share the best this week so let me continue with that.  I will conclude with the worst, only because when I type it out it seems more comical.  Plus, I don’t want to give any false impressions that it’s all the best around here!  Onward!

the b 1

Sister-brother kisses are the best!

the b 2

Little boys pretending to do schoolwork like their big sisters are the best!

the b 3

Sponge stamp painting is the best!

the b 4

Italian wedding soup is the best… (even if my kids don’t think so!)

the b 6

This girl getting her first ever braids is the best!

the b 7

One year olds discovering they can blow the lid off their cups if they blow enough bubbles are the best!

the b 8Hand-picked gerber daisies from a 3-yr-old are the best!
Some of the worst… (you know, for laughter’s sake!)

  • mouthwash being dumped on the floor by a certain 3-yr-old because her mom accidentally poured it for her not knowing she wanted to pour it herself
  • 1,000,000,000,000 pearler beads exploding all over the kitchen and family room.  (I may be exaggerating by a million or so).
  • My oldest getting a giant pencil lead stuck in her leg.  (eeeooow!)
  • I believe I mentioned the mysterious 3am baby-screaming because of mystery light-on incident
  • chickie. poop. everywhere.
  • one-year-old insisting on holding his own food and/ or utensil resulting in numerous clean-ups.

HA! HA! HA!  🙂

The Best… Day 3

More of the best… are you ready?

tbest 2

Walking into this boy’s room after his nap is the best.  Especially when he jumps up and down with that smile.  Oh, and especially when the nap was a very necessary 3 hours.

tbest 3

Let me interpret:  “Wait a minute, Mom.  You never walk in with that big black thing.  Why are you pointing it at me instead of picking me up for cuddle time?  I don’t like this at all.  No.  Not one little bit!”  (Toddlers who don’t understand their mom’s need to blog are the best!)

tbest 1

Pearler beads are the best!  (Even if a certain 3-yr-old knocked about 3 trillion all over the floor!)

tbest 1.5

Ummm… Sierra… didn’t you get the memo?  We’re focusing on the best here.  No more grumpy face, ok?

tbest 4

Menu planned dinners are the best!  No thinking required — just have to remember to possibly defrost meat.  I can be either really good at meal planning, or really bad.  The past few months I’ve been really bad.  Finally I had enough.  I was tired of winging it.  Sunday I sat down for a good hour or two and planned out meals for this month.  This week has been such a breeze… why don’t I always plan?  (Because I really don’t enjoy that part; duh!)

The rest of the Best from today (not pictured):

$1 scoop night at Handel’s… yum; the best!

Haircuts that are long overdue; the best

Talking to my husband in Boston and my dear friend in Texas… the BEST!

The Best… Day 2

tb 1

Growing chickies and a beautiful spring morning are the best!

tb 2

…Even when they flap in your face!

tb 3

…or get cuddled like a baby!

tb 4

Ants on a log; the best!

tb 6

Finding 5 warm fresh eggs at once is the best.

tb 7

These puzzle words that keep my 3-year-old busy and happy; the best!!

tb 8

A little boy learning to use a fork — he is the best!

tb 9

Afternoon iced coffee… need I say more??

tb 10

And a little stowaway; the cutest!

The Best

So, my dear friend and her family drove off to Texas today.  My parents were going to come this week, but had to cancel.  And, my husband leaves for a work trip across the country tomorrow.  This week is not exactly looking great.  But, I have a choice.  And, I’m going to choose to see the best.  And, if I have any energy left at the end of the day, I intend to share it with you… so, here we go!

the best 1

Snuggles with little ones are the best!

the best 2

Tiny crocs… the best!

the best 3

Sharing your popcorn with the chickens is the best.  (Oh, and little girls in summer dresses!)

the best 4

Garden fresh lettuce is the best.  (And grows amazingly fast down here!)

the best 5

Prolific peach trees… the best!  (Will it be peach pancakes, smoothies, or homemade jam this summer?)

the best 6

Backyard playgrounds are the best.

the best 7 Collage

Spring temperatures, sweet kids, and finishing school by lunch time; the best!

the best 8

Sad toddler faces, (when they mean “I-love-you-so-much-I-can’t-stand-to-see-you-put-me-down-even-for-a-second-to-collect-eggs”) — they’re the best!

the best 9

I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again — home grown snap peas are the best!

the best 10

This dog — he’s the best!

the best 11

Garlic chicken spaghetti; it’s the best!

the best 12

And, of course, baby spaghetti faces… THE BEST!

Crafting Therapy

Tomorrow is the day.  I’ve hinted about it a little here and there lately.  It’s the last day we get to hang out with our dear California friends before they become our dear Texas friends.  I’m just going to be honest here.  Saying goodbye stinks; especially when you have friends as awesome as these.  To help cope, we’ve done a little “crafting therapy.”  First, our girls made each of their girls pillows to take with them.

ct 1

To begin, they embroidered California and the first initial of each girls’ name on a white piece of cloth.  Next, they cut out the shape of the embroidered part.  I then did the machine sewing for them, (though I think they are ready to do it themselves… almost!)

ct 2

Finally came the stuffing.  (Sierra got to help with this part, as well!)

ct 3

Ta-da!

ct 4

We wrapped them up and delivered them along with a special book that was my personal “crafting therapy.”  Almost eight years of pictures of Allison and Grace, beginning when our little birthday buddies were just days old.  Searching through those pictures was a labor of love; what joy and fun!

ct 5

Just look at how they’ve grown!  This picture doesn’t show it, but they are really just about the same height, and always have been.   Two sweet girls who will forever be sisters in Christ!

I won’t go on and on about how much I am going to miss them.  This isn’t the place for that.  But, I do want to tell my precious friends… I love you and see you next time!  🙂