Wednesday, July 30, 2008


* Today we were at the Verizon Wireless store because I desperately need a new phone. I gave all the kids a lollipop with strict instructions to stay seated or their lollipop would be taken away. They sat for about 5 minutes and then this very nice lady (who was waiting for something and who happened to be one of the nurses on the maternity floor when I gave birth to McKenna) went over and sat on the floor with them and started talking to them. I could only hear bits and pieces of the conversation as I was talking to the sales guy, but my ears perked up when I heard Nate's indignant voice say; "No he's not! He my brudder." This lady was apparently asking Abby if they were brothers and sisters or just friends. Abby was telling her that Christian and Nathan were cousins and Nathan was having no part of it. The conversation continued and Abby said; "No Nate. He's your cousin, not your brother." Nate recanted with; "No Abby. He my brudder. Right Chrish?" Christian's just as clueless about all of this and voiced his agreement that they were indeed brothers.
*I was praying for Nate when I put him down for his nap today and after I had said "Amen" Nate asked me; "Jesus live at church right?" I explained that Jesus actually lived in Heaven up in the clouds. Then Nate asks; "Where does God live?" I explained that they lived in the same place. Nate then proceeded to ask several tough questions: Can God see me? Can God hear me? How can God hear me? Can we call him on the phone?
"Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds down in the humility that comes from wisdom." James 3:13
So precious that this little boy is seeking wisdom and understanding at such a young age!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008


This is definitely not a great picture (Emma is the one already on the bus in the hat), but it's the only one I have. Emma is going to day camp at Camp JoyEl this week. I take her to a bus stop up the road at 8:30am every morning and then pick her up at 4:30pm every afternoon. Yesterday was one of those "first day of school" moments. Emma was really nervous about camp, but she's always so brave with trying new things. Despite her butterflies she got on the bus, with no one that she knew, sat by herself and went to a place she had never been to before. I, of course, had tears in my eyes and prayed all day that she would have a great time, but I didn't follow the bus :) And boy did that prayer get answered. She could hardly wait to go back today. She is loving having new friends, a very cool camp counselor, swimming in the pool, funny skits in chapel, go karts, a secret girls club house and a water slide. Who wouldn't love all that!! Abby is definitely going next year! Today in the "secret girls clubhouse" Emma got to put on make-up because she learned that she is a princess because she is a "child of the King of Kings - Jesus." Isn't that the best! In chapel she learned about Nehemiah and she told me the whole story about him building the wall. Awesome! I love it that she's learning Bible stories that aren't the typical ones you always hear when you're a kid. Amy will probably be blogging about this camp experience a little more because Emma actually took some pictures on her camera, so click on over to Amy's blog and start bugging her to post those pictures :)
I titled this blog: SUCCESS for a reason. Here is a chronicle of our successes for today:
1. Everyone dress and fed by 8am!
2. Everyone in the car, Emma to the bus stop by 8:30am
3. To the park by 8:40am
4. All four to Toys R Us by what we went for and didn't buy a bunch of junk (no one begged for anything).
5.Sams Club with all four by 10:45am. We've worked out a great system. Both boys in the cart and Abby pushes McKenna in the stroller. McKenna slept through it all even though she was pushed into a few displays and a few people...oops!
6. Home in time for lunch
7. Check out our naptime situation

One down!

Two Down Three Down
Four Down
All at the same time, so I skipped the laundry and cleaning and went to sleep too! Oh thank you Lord! It's the little things in life that my husband grilling dinner right now. Have I had a great day or what?

The Blueberry Patch

Yesterday, Christian, McKenna and I went blueberry picking with my neighbor Kay and her grandson Charlie. This was a first for us but we're going to add it to our list of things we do every year.
Christian was actually quite good at it. He only picked the large blue ones and not the "white" ones or the purple ones. We went at 8:30am (right after dropping Emma off for camp) so the weather was perfect. Christian dumped the bucket a few times and cried about it a bit too much, but other than that we had a great time!

For you locals who want to know where we went. We went to Hess Farm right off Clayhill Rd. I think blueberry picking season is pretty much over. It would have been better to go about a month ago. They also do pick-your-own cherries and berries in early summer (early June)! I can't wait 'til next year!

Can it be????

I took this picture just a few minutes ago and if you look closely you will see an unbelievable sight!! Abby (left), Nate (middle), Christian (right) all asleep at the same time in the same room. This is a first! Good grief I hardly know what to do with myself. Now if only McKenna would take a hint and go down early for her nap...oh the bliss that would be!
For those of you who really pay attention to such things you'll notice that Abby and McKenna no longer share a room. That scenario just wasn't working out that well so we moved Abby's bed into Christian's room and on a normal day (when Christian sleeps in until 8:30 and doesn't take a nap - he woke up at 6am this morning - bizarre for him) Abby and Nate take their naps in Christian's room. That was probably way too much info. but someone out there was probably going to wonder what happened to Abby's cute yellow and pink butterfly bed.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Emma's Lemon'aid' Stand

Last May when our cousin Olivia was super sick we spent a lot of time talking about her, praying for her as a family and checking her blog. Emma really wanted to buy Olivia some toys and binkies (this was all her idea). I told her that I thought it was a great idea and that we would do it when Olivia started to feel a little better. If you know Emma you know that she always has a plan and she really likes to do things herself. She decided that she wanted to earn the money to buy things for Olivia so she came up with the idea of doing a lemonade stand. So on Friday Emma did a lemon'aid' stand. She made signs, made lemonade, cut up lemons and sat out in the ninety degree heat for literally five hours (Don't worry she was in the shade most of the time in that little sun tent you see in the picture and she drank tons of lemonade). She only came inside once. She was passionate about telling all of our neighbors about Olivia. The best part of this story is that Emma was able to share with them how our prayers are being answered because Olivia is supposed to be going home from the hospital tomorrow. Woohoo! We didn't set a price for our cups of lemonade, people could just give whatever they wanted. Some cups went for 25 cents and some cups went for $40! It was amazing! Thanks to the generosity of our neighbors and Emma's giving spirit we sold $150.89 worth of lemonade! Emma's going to go shopping this week to buy something small for Olivia and then she decided that Olivia's mom and dad would know how to use the rest of the money to take care of Olivia!

Christian thinks we should give our neighbors lemonade everyday now. He had such a good time hanging out with Emma in the front yard. He was supposed to be in charge of the cups but Emma really ended up doing all of the work. It was a very exciting day for both of them.

Olivia, we praise God for making you better and we can't wait to see some pictures of you at home with Jack and Brooklyn!
"Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." - 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Guess who was looking cute today?

"Praise the LORD, I tell myself; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. Praise the LORD, I tell myself, and never forget the good things he does for me... He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle's!"- Psalm 103:1

Fancy Shoes

Nate was so proud of his "new" shoes at church today (he got them from a friend). He loves them because they're like Daddy's shoes. What a sweet boy!

Saturday Dates with Christian

Christian and I got to spend some special time together on Saturday. Time with just one child is such a treat. We went to AC Moore because they were giving away free trains that you could color yourself. (My friend Katy gave me the heads up about this. She always knows what's going on. Thanks Katy!)
Christian was thrilled with his new train that he named Edward. Edward is one of the real Thomas trains that he doesn't have, so now he has his own version. Of course the train making table was set up in the middle of their Thomas train display so I got suckered into buying another train. So we went home with 'Edward' and Trevor.
Then we went to a McDonalds that has a very cool train theme. Notice Trevor and 'Edward' in this picture.

This is the model train that wraps around the ceiling all over the restaurant. Very entertaining.
On our way home we stopped by a Mennonite farm to buy some corn on the cob. Our area has a very large Mennonite community which we love. Lots of farms, fresh produce, crafty places, and an awesome car mechanic that we trust! Anyway we pulled into the farm and about half a dozen precious children appeared. I was buying some corn and I turned around to see Christian holding a kitten. The kids let Christian hold five different cats and pet their dog. Christian really wanted to stay and play with them and I wouldn't have minded a bit. He loves farms and attention from other kids.
It was a very sweet day with my boy!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Baltimore Zoo

Christian, Emma, McKenna and I traveled to my parent's house on Tuesday. Ryan was out of town on business so we decided to do some fun stuff (Abby and Nate have some special trips planned with us later in the summer...this was Emma's turn. You'll see Abby's adventure in Aug. and Nate's in Sept.) We were planning on going to the Baltimore Zoo on Wednesday but there was an 80% chance of rain, so we decided to go to the free movie at Regal Theater. Must to our great dismay the tickets were sold out when we got there, so to fend off our dire disappointment we ended up at Chuck E. Cheese. I didn't take any pictures because we've all been to Chuck E. Cheese and I've decided that I go a little overboard with the pictures sometimes. Grandmom babysat McKenna today (Thursday) and PopPop joined us for a beautiful day at the zoo. We spent five hours checking out every single exhibit and we left with tired feet and some great memories!

This was the highlight of the day. Christian's been telling everyone that he saw "a monkey do a circus." This baby chimp was really showing off and Christian and Emma were right there to see him swinging and banging on the glass. It was one of those priceless zoo moments when an animal actually cooperates and does a little entertaining.

We have a picture of Amy on this lion when she was about 4 years old. Then one of Emma when she was 2 1/2 and now we have one of her when she is seven.
This baby elephant names Samson is the star of the zoo right now. He's four months old and so so cute.

Hanging out in the bird's nest!

Christian and Emma climbed up a spiral staircase inside a giant tree and then they zoomed down this very fun slide over and over again.Emma was a little nervous about this cave with bats in it.
Christian didn't seem to mind this dark cave with bats, skunks and snakes in it.

Christian petting a goat with a random friend.

Emma on the farm.