Wednesday, August 24, 2016


My Tucker picked this flower for me yesterday afternoon; flowers always make him think of his mommy. (It makes me want to grow a yard full of flowers just so he can pick them.)

Then, just a few hours later, I spoke far too harshly to him over a simple, childish mistake. He forgave me quickly when I asked for it, but my heart still aches over the way I spoke to him, the hurt I caused. As I tucked him in last night, I apologized again, and he said "well, mommy..that's already been forgiven!" Sometimes I'm not sure who is shepherding whose heart here. 

"And God picks out such sinners as you are, on purpose, 
to illustrate the glory of his grace in and upon you." John Flavel

Sunday, August 21, 2016

I do not ask any more delight....

I have perceived that to be with those I like is enough,
To stop in company with the rest at evening is enough,
To be surrounded by beautiful, curious, breathing, laughing flesh is enough,
To pass among them or touch any one,
or rest my arm ever so lightly round his or her neck for a moment-
what is this, then?
I do not ask any more delight -
I swim in it as in a sea.
-Walt Whitman

Friday, August 19, 2016

Round here

School is back in session, and the kids are finishing up their first week today!

Here is what we've been up to the last week of summer and beyond:

Tucker went to Summer Spectacular, an incredible day camp our children's ministry puts on each summer. I got this text at the end of the week, and it made me so proud:

He made up this song last week.  I love this kid!

Lana decided she wants to start cooking one a meal a week.
She made crepes for us one Saturday morning, and they were good!

Pepper is doing just fine.  Her vision isn't back, but it doesn't seem to be worsening.  She's getting around fine, and still loves to snuggle and love on us as much as ever.  We're obsessed with her.

She cracks us up making little "nests" for herself all over the house.

Popsicles before bedtime....a sure sign Daddy is in charge!

The very last week of their summer, the kids went to a sports day camp at PCC. 
(Dan & I both had to work full-time that week.)
It was really well done, and the kids had a great time! 
Lana was chosen as Camper of the Week for her group - 
I love how she lets her light shine wherever she goes!
They learned this song during the week:

Dan was tucking Lana in one night, and I came in to find this:

The older they get, the more they love to read, and because they both are a bit introverted like I am, they use reading as a way to wind down & recharge.  I love coming in to a room and finding them like this:

Because the beginning of school can make everyone a little cranky.
Maybe we all need a chill pill?

Dan helped me get these shelves hung to reorganize my oils.  
I LOVE having them all easily accessible!

A few glimpses into their first week of school:

Tucker bragging on his sister while waiting to go to his class one morning:

Lana's class celebrating their teacher's birthday:

Monday, August 15, 2016

First Day of 1st and 5th grade

It's so hard to believe I have children old enough to be in 1st and 5th grade!
No matter, here they are, and they could not have been more excited to start school.

I am so thankful our children are at Aletheia.
It has been an adjustment financially and otherwise,
but there is no sacrifice to great for the peace that we all have about their time here.

Here are a few pictures from Tucker's first adventure into Mrs. Walsingham's classroom!

They had a wonderful first day!
We celebrated with a Wild Honey treat after school:

Lana never stopped bubbling from the time I picked her up until she went to bed;
Tucker could barely get a word in edgewise.  :)

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Olympics: Rio 2016

We are Olympics-obsessed around here!  
Opening ceremonies and the Parade of Nations is tonight,
and we are ready!

After staying up late last night watching the Parade of Nations,
we were up first thing this morning with it back on.
You can find us on our couch every free minute for the next few weeks!

Even snacktime gets an Olympic theme!

The only bad part about the Olympics this year is they are during school!
It's downright un-American to have to go to bed early when there are so many wonderful events airing late at night.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Round here

Tomorrow morning, I go back to school.
I love my job; I love my co-workers; I love teaching.
But I am so unbelievably sad that this summer is over.
It has flown by, 
and I'll never have another summer with my babies at this age.
They are truly a delight to me in every way,
and I miss them like crazy when we are at school!

They don't go back until the 15th,
so our lives will be cobbled together until then with camps and such.

So here's what we've been up to 'round here, 
during these last few days of summer.

Lana went to a 2 day mini cheer camp at Aletheia last week,
and had a great time!

Cricket Harrison is the cheerleading coach,
and I sat in that chair and cried over how precious she is.
The love of Jesus just oozes out of her,
and I love for my Lana to spend time under her instruction!

We've lived in Pensacola for 5 years,
and just went to the Fish House for the first time!
Of course I had to try the world famous Jim Shirley's Grits a Ya Ya. 
They lived up to their reputation to say the least!

Madison has been our most treasured babysitter for years now,
and we are so sad her family is moving to South Carolina this summer.
She is, quite literally, the best sitter we've ever had.
She interacts with and loves on my babies every minute she's here.
She's the first sitter to ever get Tucker to go to sleep without us being home,
with no tears at all.
I trust her implicitly.

 She's the kind of girl you hope your daughter grows up to be like;
the kind of girl you want your son to marry.
I will miss her so much, and will grieve the fact she won't be a regular influence on my children's lives.  We are so proud of her family for following the Lord to SC -
we are just sad for us!

Dan had the opportunity to preach on a Sunday morning last month,
and his note on his car from the college student he mentors
made me cry my face off.  
Y'all, college students and young adults like this 
are the reason I will survive this election cycle.  
They give me great hope for our future.
How many college students do you know
that would take the time to write the most precious, heartfelt 
letter of encouragement, pair it with a gift,
and leave it to be found?
The fact that these students love us and want to be a part of our lives
is so much more than we could ever deserve.

Tooth #2 is gone!

It was sooo loose, but he wouldn't let us pull it.
(and by loose I mean dangling on by a thread.  ick.)

Finally it came out on its own!

My brother Allan and his wife Ranae came from Fredricksburg for their yearly summer visit.  We love them SO much, and are so grateful for any time we have with them.

I love how they genuinely love and enjoy our children.
They are going to be amazing parents!

My precious sister-in-law makes pottery - 
look at my new favorite mug!
It's SO me, and it makes me so happy that she thought of me.

The kids and I had a full day of running errands,
and the library was on the list.  
These are some of my favorite moments of all time.

Lana has a knack for putting things together like her dad does.
I would never have gotten this kite together.
When I told her how impressed I was, she said 
"Mom, you really just have to read the directions."  Bless.

Sunday mornings with these 4.  So much love.

This love bug makes my heart so happy.

 Tucker has been asking for a cantaloupe all summer;
he was so happy when I let him pick his own out at Bailey's.

Tuesday nights with a group of college girls,
studying the Word and praying and being together....
it's one of the sweetest times of my week.
These girls are like nothing you've ever known.

The kids having fun on Wednesday night Kid's Quarters:
Tucker     Lana
Their groups went in to The Attic at separate times, but they were chosen to play the same game.  Ha!

"Look, mom, I'm just like you, working at your desk!"

"Look!  Now I'm just like dad, working in the yard with my shirt off and sunglasses on."

They enjoyed a day on a pontoon boat in Orange Beach to celebrate
cousin Sofia's birthday.

Our favorite place to eat oysters on the half shell is Doc's.
Dan and Lana and I can put away 2 dozen in a matter of minutes - it's a family fave.
Tucker finally tried one....and loved it!!  He begged us to order another dozen.

My favorite song: Mommy, by Tucker.