Plantation Field Trip

July 23, 2016 at 9:46 pm (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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Our morning yesterday included a trip to a local plantation.  They were having an informational thing for kids on organic gardening, so I thought it would be fun.  The kids didn’t learn much that they haven’t already learned from helping with our garden, but they still had a good time.  They got to pick some smooth squash and plant little biodegradable pots of broccoli and carrots that we can put in the big garden when the weather cools down.

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Plus I got to get some fun pictures of flowers, a favorite pastime.

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The view…

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I love living in a rural area!  It’s so gorgeous…

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We also spent the night at my parents’ after the aquarium, so I got to take some pictures of my dad’s beautiful hibiscus…

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And the fairy garden my parents are creating for my daughter and niece…

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And pretty hastas…

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My mom got some baby K snuggle time, too!  He’s one tuckered out little fella after this weekend!

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Aquarium Birthday

July 23, 2016 at 9:33 pm (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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This weekend brought a fun trip to the aquarium for my daughter’s birthday present from my parents.  She was looking so forward to it, and the kids had a blast!  Lots of pics to share!

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My son has taken a liking to sharks…

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Reflections…

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Baby K’s first trip to the aquarium!  I’m so thankful for family to come along on these trips.  My dad and brother-in-law carried baby K the whole way since I didn’t know we had to check strollers at the beginning.

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Activity center…

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Love this fish!

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The jellies…

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My oldest son even touched one!

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The three-legged turtle…

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Seahorses…

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Puffins…

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Baby K got super tired and slept part of the way!

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This fish was letting other fish clean his scales apparently…

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Pretty coral…

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Feeding frenzy!

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My niece making fishy faces at a fish!  Love that girl!

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My daughter’s favorite part, the dolphins!

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View from the dolphin arena…

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Hanging jelly fish display…

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My oldest son wasn’t too keen on the crowded displays, but he did enjoy the kids’ play area, and especially putting on a puppet show!

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Shark jaws…

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It was a really fun trip!  We also did a plantation trip that morning, but I’m doing a separate post for those pics because this one’s getting long.  Have a blessed weekend!

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Miscellaneous Life

July 21, 2016 at 11:22 pm (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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Ok, time for a quick rundown of the happenings around here because it’s been crazy, as usual.  First, we had pipe issues in the kitchen.  So, of course, hubby had to tear out the bottom cabinets, do a bunch of work, and install new countertops.  We’re still putting the kitchen back together.  But I am really grateful that hubby is willing to put the time into doing home improvement projects right.  He painstakingly leveled the floor and walls, cut the countertop himself, and installed everything.  I think I would have been one to just say, oh well there’s a gap in the countertop.  But he took the time to make it right, and I’m grateful for that because it looks much better than the gapped countertop:).

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My daughter got this cute little Colonial Poppet Doll from my uncle for her birthday.  She hand-sewed a good portion of it, which I thought was awesome!  By the time it came to the dress though, I decided a machine sewing lesson was in order, too:).

Fun baby K bath time shots!

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Neighbor horses!

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The garden is going crazy!!!!  Hubby wasn’t too thrilled that I way overplanted the squash, zucchini, and gourds.  But the kids and I have been enjoying this year’s garden so much.  We go out every day and check for more veggies.  I actually find it kind of fun wading and digging through the greenery to find the latest fruits of the garden.  Gardening may be becoming my new favorite hobby, especially since it’s one the kids and I enjoy together!

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Baby pumpkin…

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A day’s harvest…

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I was concerned about my bumpy squash…until I took the time to look at the seed packet and realized I ordered a bumpy breed of summer squash….um, yeah.  They’re good though!  We even got some Siamese squash!

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I’ve also been canning a lot of relish with the abundance of cucumbers…yummy!

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And some pretty flowers from the front garden…

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Loving the summer evenings!

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Some more fun baby K shots.  This little guy just keeps us laughing.  He’s gotten into the stage of putting things in and on other things.  And he’s so cute when he dances to any music he hears.  He says dada, mama, hi, dog, and he tries balloon and ball.  He also grunts uh-oh, too adorable!  And he’s started saying ouch every time someone says ow.  Such a ray of sunshine, this little guy!

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I haven’t been tracking this pregnancy all.  But here is the baby bump at…um, I think I’m at 27 weeks now…I’ll have to check that.  Life has been so insane…

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Zucchini bread noshing!  So glad the kids love zucchini bread because we’re eating a lot of it!  Really just eating a lot of zucchini in general – zucchini lasagna, curried zucchini soup, sautéed zucchini and squash, parmesan zucchini crisps.  Feeling like Bubba from Forrest Gump…

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Another day’s haul…

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And the great ladybug release!  When I thought our squash were diseased because they were so bumpy, I ordered live ladybugs to help do away with garden pests.  They came yesterday, and the kids released them into the garden.  They had a blast with these little buggers!

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Sweet little Morris

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The melons are growing!

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Fun little gourds.  Between these and the cute little mini pumpkins, we’re going to have fun decorating this fall!

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Pumpkins!

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A random pumpkin bush even started growing in our backyard…and producing…

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The tomato plants are starting to bear fruit.

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And this…  Yeah, this is apparently called Jimson Weed and is growing at various places throughout our garden.  It’s not a good weed, but it sure does produce pretty flowers.  Eventually I’m going to have to get these out, but for now I’m enjoying the blooms…

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And tomorrow brings some local plantation fun and a trip to the aquarium!!!  Have a blessed end of the week!

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Baby K in B&W

July 15, 2016 at 1:06 am (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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More pictures I uploaded and forgot to post.  Baby K in black and white!

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Summer Fun

July 15, 2016 at 1:03 am (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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And now some pics from yesterday. We planned on going back to the same beach with other friends, but the forecast was calling for rain.  It ended up not raining, but we got in some sprinkler time.  And mama got caught up on laundry and house cleaning!

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Sweet Libby dog…

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I also got around to some gardening.  Our gorgeous hydrangeas blooming…

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The veggie haul…

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I was slacking a little on picking the zucchini, so a few got really big.  Perfect for loaves of zucchini bread and chocolate zucchini bread….yum!

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I also used one of the big ones for zucchini lasagna.  Um yeah, this might be one of my new favorite dishes.  Just slice the zucchini into thin strands about the width of lasagna noodles (hubby got a fry and chip slicer a while back that worked perfectly for slicing the zucchini).  Then you just substitute the zucchini for noodles in your favorite lasagna recipe.  It’s so ridiculously good, even my daughter had seconds and she’s pretty picky about veggies.

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The rest of the garden is starting to produce, too.  Though I think we will be eating a whole lot of creative zucchini and cucumber dishes for a while!  I can’t wait for the sweet corn to be ready!

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The cucumbers looking great…

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More zucchini about to be ready for picking…

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A ton of squash is almost ready!

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And the gourds and pumpkins are starting to form…

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Fall decorating is going to so fun with all our cute gourds this year!  And that’s about it for this week so far.  Today was a rough one with a nasty commute in super hot humid temps.  But I’m home now and was able to enjoy some time with my kids and some yummy zucchini lasagna!  Life is good.  And I will leave this post with a silly frog that made his way into the kiddie pool when it rained…

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Happy almost Friday!

 

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Beach Day!

July 15, 2016 at 12:47 am (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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I didn’t even realize I hadn’t gotten around to posting this one yet.  These are some pics from a fun day with friends at a small local beach.  I love this place because there’s hardly ever anyone else there and we just have a nice relaxing day.

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My daughter got a custom-made sand mermaid tail – LOL!

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And my son tried to replicate…

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He’s a quiet soul, but he does love a good beach adventure!

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The water snake that made them all a little nervous…and more than a little curious.

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This sweet girl holding my cutie!

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And playing with him…

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Grass on the nose…

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And tiny toes…

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So my oldest was playing with a water squirter…

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Filled it up…

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And came right over to mama…soaked me with water and seaweed, that ornery little boy did.

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A lovely view…

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So that was our beach day.  And my daughter also got to paint and decorate one of her birthday presents, a fairy house….

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Hope you’re all having a blessed week!

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Wedding Cake Weekend

July 10, 2016 at 1:23 am (Cakes, Family, Personal, Uncategorized)

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Another wedding cake in the books!  And a really beautiful wedding for a wonderful couple!  Even though the past couple of days making this cake were stressful and exhausting, it was well worth it for the sweet young lady who got married today.  Hubby, baby K and I had a great time celebrating with our church friends.

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The kids at the wedding had a blast!

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The cutie flower girl…

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The beautiful bride…

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The bride and her friends made most of the decorations, and they turned out amazing!

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Proud bride’s mama…

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Hubby and baby K…

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Hubby and me…

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Some great friends…

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The bridal party…

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Celebrating with sparkling cider…

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And yay!  This cake is finished and enjoyed!

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Now to get some sleep….

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Catching Up and Garden Love!!

July 4, 2016 at 9:39 pm (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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And now to commence another photo dump!  I’m plant picture crazy these days.  Here are some from our front garden…

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And the veggie garden.  Here’s the pics I took about two weeks ago…

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And the pictures I took today – it’s exploded in awesomeness!

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The tomato plants…

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The squash, zucchini and cucumbers are blossoming!

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Beans and lettuce…

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Corn love…

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The melons and gourds are looking happy, too!  And the sweet potatoes are starting to sprout!

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Checking out the grape vines…

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And our wild Black-Eyed Susans…

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So that’s the garden happenings.  And here’s a couple shots of the sweet deer in our back forest.

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Hubby keeps threatening to make the deer dinner, but I know he’s just messing with us since that deer isn’t in the freezer yet.  She’s been hanging out in our forest for more than two weeks.  Plus I think hubby secretly really likes seeing her around.  And some pics of my daughter with her LEGO dragon…

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Morris the cat…

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So another birthday party is in the history books, and I will let you in on my dirty little secret.  One of the main reasons I like throwing the kids’ birthday parties at our house is because it motivates my hubby to get projects done.  He’s a bit of a procrastinator, and a deadline always helps.  It’s a stressful week leading up to the party, but the house progress is so worth it!  We painted the entryway, kitchen, and dining room; added some décor; hubby fixed up the laundry room, put a new wood door on our bedroom, fixed the wall he busted while taking out the original linen closet, did a ton of work outside, tore up the rotten bottom part of the deck, and just all around got a lot of work done.  So here are some shots from the improved entryway…

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We also wrapped up homeschool in May.  It’s so amazing to look at the progress the kids have made at the end of a school year – and the vast amount of work they’ve done.  Homeschooling can be rough some days, but it is one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done.  I love watching my kids learn and grow.  Here are a few pictures from the art projects we did…

Da Vinci’s “Last Supper”…

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Seurat inspired pointillism….

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And Michelangelo inspired fresco paintings…

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And last but certainly not least, my daughter’s gymnastics class ended for the summer in June.  She did the cutest little routine for the final class!  And she got a participation trophy, of course…

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And that catches us up for the first half of summer.  Have a blessed week!

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Joint Birthday Bash!

July 4, 2016 at 8:03 pm (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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Happy 1st Birthday to this little cutie!  Hard to believe it’s already been a year.  Baby K, you are such a light and joy in our lives.  Your sweet smiles and cuddles are the best!  It’s been an amazing year with you in our lives.

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This year, we decided to do one joint birthday party for all of our kiddos.  And it was a fun one!  We couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day.  Low 80s with plenty of sunshine.  So the kids enjoyed some outdoor fun with their friends.  Kiddy pools…

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Baby K trying out the baby pool…

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And this little cutie…baby K’s future wife, I’ve already claimed her for him:).

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Water balloons…

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Piñatas…

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Orca head…

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And cake, of course!  I made each of the kids a cake, but sadly, I forgot to get pictures of them….  But baby K enjoyed his chocolate cake…and the balloons…

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Cake in the rolls…

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Baby close-ups…

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One of the girls from church even came over to face paint for the kids…

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She painted baby K’s back and a heart with “mom” on his arm!

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Indoor fun and presents…

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A sleepy Popple!

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Some of the décor…

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And I had to share this adorable bag my niece drew for my daughter.  She is such a great artist!

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And one of baby K and mommy….

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We continued the birthday celebration today with a fun trip to Sweet Frog!

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And that’s the birthday fun.  Fireworks are rained out tonight, so it looks like we’ll be ending this 4th of July with a relaxing movie night, which is perfect for me.  I’m so thankful for the family and friend time this weekend and for celebrating the greatest blessings in my life, my adorable little kiddos!  I have some more photo dumps to do, but I’ll make a new post for that since this one is running long – LOL.  Have a safe and blessed 4th of July!!  God bless America, and may America start doing what God blesses!

 

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Birthday, Memorial Day and Other Happenings

June 1, 2016 at 1:24 am (Family, Personal, Photography, Uncategorized)

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Ok, time for a massive photo dump and catching up.  I just can’t keep up with downloading all the pictures these days.  Much as I would like to take the time to edit more of the photos, it’s just not happening these days.  So here are the goings on in our lives over the past.  Some baby bath time fun…

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Baby K is in the phase of getting super messy when he eats, so he’s been averaging 2 or more baths per day…especially with the weather heating up.  He’s loving it!

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Play time!

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A bunny pancake breakfast, and baby K breaking in his new swing…

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Swinging time!

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The backyard rose…

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I love that we have honeysuckles in the backyard!!  These bring back fun childhood memories!

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And Morris…

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That’s a yawn, not a nasty face, I promise:).

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Sweet stray kitty…

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The neighbor horses…

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Dandelions a plenty…

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Backward sliding’s the new big thing…

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And last week brought my oldest’s 8th birthday.  This sweet boy!  I love him so very much.  It’s so amazing to watch him blossom in his own way.  It’s funny how we set out on this adventure of parenthood with ideas of how our kids will grow up and how we’re going to lead them certain ways.  But God has such better plans.  I would have never thought my baby boy would grow into a piano player, but it’s such a beautiful thing watching him play.  He’s a quiet, sweet soul, and I couldn’t ask for more blessings from this little guy!

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Front yard roses…

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I was bummed to miss an opportunity to take a family trip to Tennessee for my cousin’s country wedding.  It just wasn’t something I could pull off with all the school work, work, and kids to pack.  But Memorial Day weekend turned out well.  There was a lot of stress as I barely made some of the deadlines for my school work (this class has an insane workload!).  But there was also some great family time.  The kids and I visited some local animal shelters on Friday and met the sweetest tempered dog I’ve ever seen.  She’s a beauty, too.  This 4-year-old Blue Tick Hound was so good with the kids, and especially with baby K, when we got to play with her at the shelter that we ended up adopting her and bringing her home.  She’s been a delight so far!  Some minor obedience training is in order, but she fits my bill for not being a jumper, a chewer, or a hyper crazy dog.  She did tree the cat, but what can I say, she’s a hound dog.  Trust me, she’s not missing a smell in this neighborhood, and she is more than thrilled with the plentiful animal life around here to sink her nose into!

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Some more baby cuteness!

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Smelling the roses…

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We also got some gardening in Monday.  Hubby and I tilled, weeded and mulched the front garden.  And we got an enormous veggie garden planted…finally.  Some of the veggies probably won’t do terribly well now that it’s hot.  But we’ll see what crops up!  My little girl loves all things nature and really enjoyed finding a frog (toad?) that happened to miss the tiller…

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Yep, not my thing.  But she was happy.  I was mostly concerned that she washed her hands thoroughly and immediately…yuck!

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For the most part, baby K really enjoyed being outside under the awning hubby got while we gardened.  But the tears did come eventually…

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The front side garden before mulching…

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Tilling away…

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Part of the front garden a bloom…

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So Libby the new dog (short for Liberty) did tree the cat on her first day here.  But Morris is staking her claim and the two are mutually obsessed with each other.  They have regular staring contests!

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So that’s what’s been going on around here.  I hope everyone had a great Memorial Day!  God bless!

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