Friday, March 30, 2012

Five Plus One ~ Spring

What a week!  Within these walls you hear sniffling, coughing, shuffling and sighing.  Over the steady sound of nose-blowing I can hear birds chirping.  We may be experiencing pestilence and the plague in our home, but outside it's spring!

My plan this weekend is to get out into the fresh weather and invite that living air into our home.  It's time to enjoy the birth of this new season!

Say good-bye to kleenex and Motrin and embrace a refreshed perspective ...

Front porch view:  buds, birds, bulbs!

My very own daffy.  Such a happy flower!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Hee, Hee! Ha, ha! Snort!

What can I learn from my kids?

Well ...

I could learn from Aaron the importance of starting your day with a good chuckle.  As I creep downstairs in the dark to take on Jillian Michaels and her most current plan to torture me, I can hear my boy cackling in his room.  I can picture him still snuggled in his covers listening to Click and Clack the Tappet Brothers on his MP3 player with a huge sleepy smile on his face.  Ha, ha, ha!

I could learn from Norah the importance of intermittent giggling during breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Whether it's silly faces, ridiculous voices, goofy stories from her day or cracking her new favorite joke, Norah is famous for bring laughter to our kitchen table.  I'm quite certain that is one of the reasons she so long and slender ... she's burning up all those calories as she giggles through her meal.  Hee, hee, hee!

I could learn from Ashley the importance of making others laugh.  I would like to think that Baby S likes us all, but she has a special affinity for LeLe.  And for good reason.  Ashley has absolutely no qualms about acting completely goofy with the sole purpose of getting a squeal out of her surrogate-sissy.  Fifteen minutes of peek-a-boo?  No problem.  Ten minutes of squeaking nonsense words in a high-pitched voice?  You got it!  Of course, hearing this little cutie's cocktails of coo's and cackles brings a smile and snicker to Ashley ... and the rest of us, too.  Hardy-har-har!

I could learn from Lydia the importance of ending my day with some yuk-yuk-yukking.  As we cuddle on my bed for book time, we share our bests and leasts of the day.  Without fail Weeda will mimic Ashley as she talks about her favorite and not-so-favorite moments of her day.  In Ashley's voice.  It would be a little unnerving if it wasn't so funny!  As Ashley hears the echo of her own voice, she gets to giggling and pretty soon those two little goofballs are snorting, snickering and holding their sides.  And so is Mommy.  Tee-hee-hee!

Laughter ... the most important ingredient to every day.  And what I'm learning from kids.  Every day.

A little of that laughter during
Nana's "Don't Go" Game!

Prompt #2 ~ Things my children can teach me.

Mama’s Losin’ It

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Time-Warp ~ Help!

A number of years ago, I made this little slideshow for our MOPS group.  I love these little snapshots of my babies when they were, uh ... babies.

As I watch this again, the overwhelming feelings of needing help in the midst of this mothering gig come back in waves.  And chills.  And cold sweats.

Oh, wait.  Maybe that's because while the demands and challenges of mothering change as our kids get older, there are still demands and challenges.  And a lot of toe nails to trim.

If I were to produce a remix of this video, much would be the same.  But I'd have to add ...

Help me with my homework.

Drive me to school.

Take me to gymnastics.

Soothe my tender feelings.

Braid my hair.

Unknot my shoe laces.

Hug me ... but not in front of my buddies.

And you?  What would would be scribbled on your white board?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Two Words

As I zoomed along the highway, singing along to my own personal Sara Groves radio station, God was planting a seed.  This long stretch of desert road is actually fertile ground for a lot of God's little kernels.    It was on this same dry sweep of land that the idea of this blog was planted.  Over the past year and a half, God has used this long and lonely stretch of road to water and nurture this writing adventure.  And this past weekend's trek was no exception.

As I set the cruise control in the car and settled in for the drive, I was not only excited and anxious to get away for the weekend, I was also hoping (with great expectations) for some direction as to my next writing series.

I have been feeling a little uninspired in my writing.  A bit dry, literarily speaking.  I just finished my series in February, Snapshots of the Heart, and I while I loved the challenge of that series, it wiped me out!  Add to that the busy-ness of spring-time ... kid's school activities in full swing, MOPS meetings to finish with enthusiasm, VBS planning beginning (already?!?) and the usual "go, Mom, go!" of life ... and this little garden of writing is under threat of neglect.

But, this gift of writing is a tender plant that I want to care for, water and grow.  It is precious to me.  And I'm a happier mom, wife and woman when I've had time to cultivate this plant.  So ... then question becomes what to do?

In God's faithfulness, He gave me a new little blossom to tend to.  It's small.  It's still just a seed in my mind.  It's settling into my mind and heart and taking root.

I love when God is tangible!  When you know in your heart you've encountered Him!  This answer to my scattered prayer for inspiration is a gift and a reminder of His intimate care of me.  I don't have all my ideas growing just yet, but I know I'm being nudged by God to faithfully use this gift He's give me.

Even if the only words I have right now are "small things".

Small things.  Stay tuned to see how thought this grows ...

And what about you?  
God planting any seeds lately?  
How are you cultivating them?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Well Fed

This weekend, I got to spend quality time with some of my favorite ladies.

Sitting with my mom, a creamy and sweet cup of coffee in my hands while still in my pj's.  Time to be heard with no interruptions; no need to start and restart and start and restart the same thought.  Time to laugh at the funny (and not so funny) aspects of being a mom.  Time to be encouraged.  My heart was filled.

Working side-by-side in the kitchen with my sister.  Laughing and reminiscing about middle school fashion shows and awkward moments.  Chopping veggies and snitching baby green asparagus pieces.  Marveling at the intoxicating smells of the dish she is preparing.    My stomach was filled.

Squawking along with Sara Groves in the car.  Three hours all told; just the two of us driving along in the car.  Hearing her words speak the stilted stutters of my heart ... again.   A few brief tears, a smattering of goose bumps, a renewed spirit.  My soul was filled.

Yes, I ran away for the weekend, but this time not out of desperation.  This was intentional.  This was planned weeks ago.  It was, of course, choreographed by God.  After my previous tear-filled flight to Montrose, I have been trying to be more intentional about giving myself some breaks.  Choosing to be purposeful in not filling my proverbial plate has been a blessing.  For me and my family.

Besides trying to deliberately minimize the commitments I say, "Yes", to, I have also begun a beautiful tradition of a Sabbath week.  It looks a little like this ...

I highlight the week on the kitchen calendar, declaring this week off-limits for chaos.

No extra errands.
No play dates.
No meetings.
No doctor's appointments.

I stay home.

I look a project in the eyes and tackle it.  All the way to the miraculous end.
I sit on the floor and play Candyland.  And then maybe Chutes & Ladders.
I make a list and cross a few things off.  And shrug off the to-do's that linger.
I tackle the usual tasks.  The laundry, gymnastic trips and meals are a must.
I breathe grace in and breathe grace out.  For me and my kids.

I truly wish I could dress every week up for its own Sabbath rest.  But life has it's own demands.  For now, my one week a month will do.

This weekend was a wonderful spring board for my upcoming week.

I am well fed and ready to rest.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Snapshots from Spring Break ~ Park Day!

Last Friday, Brett took the day off and we made plans to "Pretend It's Summer".  Not too much of a stretch considering it was around 70 degrees outside!

We started with a trip to our favorite park and a picnic lunch and then enjoyed getting wet for a bit at our nearby Rec. Center.

Here are a few of my favorite snapshots from our almost-summer day:

While climbing over all the apparatus, the girls spent a lot of their time on the monkey bars.  Ashley has crazy strong hands and arms and will happily traverse back and forth on the bars until she has worn little blisters in her hands.  

Norah, not to be outdone, follows close behind.  She added the extra challenge of closing her eyes.  What a goofy girl!

Aaron, on the other hand, is truly my son ...

Inherited my humor.  And worthless arms.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Snapshots of Spring Break ~ More Color!

As I wrote on Monday, we planned a number of crafts last week.  The kids enjoyed getting paint on their projects and themselves.  The kids delighted in designing their handprints.  And the kids astonished themselves with their abilities to turn a lump of clay into ladybugs, snails and daggers.

But Mommy had a crafty week, too!  I also enjoyed painting and squishing around clay ... and tackling a project that I had pinned on Pinterest several weeks ago.

I was on the look out for something fun and Springy for our front door and found this.  Now ... I don't read Japanese, but I am a visual learner.  And I'm also a good faker.  With a few peeks at this project, I headed to Hobby Lobby and improvised.

In place of the green foam wreath, I chose a straw wreath that was wrapped in plastic.  I left the plastic on to keep it from self-destructing and in the process saved about $5 on the price of the wreath.  Awesome!

I didn't know how much eye-lash yarn I would need, so I bought two.  It only took one.  So now I get to take one back and put $7 back in my pocket.  Yahoo!

In place of the flower ribbon, I picked up a small bouquet of silk flowers in a variety of colors (because I really like color).  I also had a handful of random buttons laying around so I decided to use those for the center of flowers.  I used some floral wire that I had in my craft stash and by running a piece of wire up through the flower, through the button and back down, I had a nice little stick to press into the straw wreath.  That allowed the flowers to stand up and away from the "green grass", too.

I chose the purple wired ribbon to add a little more color and tied a big bow for the top while still leaving plenty for the loop at the top.

Finally, I printed my little words, "bare feet welcome..." off computer.  Before attaching them to floral wire, I "aged" the paper by crumbling it up a bit and running over the paper with a flesh-toned colored pencil.  When I had it appealingly crinkled and colored, I poked the supporting wires into the wreath and then tweaked it until I like it.


Inspired by Pinterest ... hodge-podged by me!
A little Spring Bling for my front door!

Prompt #4 ~ Pinterest Challenge ...

Mama’s Losin’ It

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Snapshots from Spring Break ~ Time-Warp

About a million years ago (or maybe it just seems like it ...) I took riding lessons.  Once a week, my mom would load us three kids up in the station wagon and drive the winding dirt roads out to the country.  Once a week we would climb up on one of Anne's horses and trot around her corral.  

And once a week, I was an Olympic equestrian jumper.  

In reality I was a pipsqueak bouncing around the paddock while hanging on tight to King Jay or I was wrestling with Frosty as he stood stubbornly chewing grass and refusing to budge an inch ... yanking on the reins and fruitlessly kicking him.

What fond memories ...

Which makes last Thursday such fun!  Ashley's birthday gift from us was an afternoon riding horses at a friend's house.  I think she liked it:

For about an hour, Ashley plodded around the corral with an enormous smile on her face.  Each time the owner walked back my direction, they would stop near where I stood.  But when asked if she wanted to go around again, she would grin and nod, "Yes, please!"

Norah and Aaron also had fun taking turns riding whichever horse Ashley wasn't currently on.  Norah had an equally wide-grin while Aaron was a bit more "joe cool" about the whole thing.  He sorta slouched back in the saddle and held the reins with one hand ... like he'd been riding horses his whole life!

Such a fun afternoon!  And fun snapshots to remember the day when my kids were Rodeo Princesses and Bronc Riders ... at least, in their imaginations!

Thanks, Atencios ... looks like we'll be back!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Snapshots of Spring Break ~ Games!

Last Tuesday we enjoyed a Movie Marathon.  But, seeing as a post about that would consist of me describing the happily glazed over looks on my kids faces as we watched Puss 'n Boots, Mr. Popper's Penguins and, later in the evening, Hugo, I think I'll move on to Wednesday.

We invited our cousins and neighbor-buddy over for a day of games.  And boy, oh boy, did we play!  The day before, Norah noted down all the games we have in our house and put the slips of paper in a popcorn bucket.  Then we brainstormed outside games and filled another bucket with those slips of paper.  When the rest of the kids arrived, we were ready to go!

First we covered just a few rules:
1) Everybody plays every game ... even if it's a game you don't like or you don't think you're good at.
2) Be a good sport and cheer on everyone else. (Coincidentally, Kindness was the virtue of the day)
3) Have fun!

The first game we pulled from the bucket was Charades.  We had filled a ziplock bag with prompts so that we didn't spend our time thinking up something to act out.  Some of the answers were blurted out quickly while others required a few pointers from the adults.  The kids were great about cheering on the "charader" ... it was a great warm-up to our game marathon!

Before we got bored of acting out "Wizard of Oz" and "Phineas & Ferb" we quickly moved on the next game ... and the next and the next and the next.

The boys in the midst of an intense game of Minotaurus.

Meanwhile ...

The girls playing a cut-throat game of Spot It.

Some games took just a few minutes to play through, like Hat Stackers Memory Game, while Ticket to Ride was the 2-hour tournament that kept the big kids busy through nap time.  (My kids still talk about the train game ... looks like we have a new family game to purchase!)

That's a lot of train cars!  And smiles!

It was fun to see the kids enjoying one another and playing some of their favorite games.  The laughter and giggles were music to my ears.  I also loved that we didn't hear the words, "I'm bored" all day.  They never had a chance to get bored because we kept them busy, busy, busy!

Even the little ones kept busy with puzzles.  Lots of them!

My favorite games of the day were outside.

Just before lunch, we drew Obstacle Course ~ Outside from the popcorn bucket.  Within a few minutes we had pulled our mini-trampoline out into the driveway, rounded up frisbees and beanbags, and set up some cones for the scooter-portion of the race.  It was a hodge-podge of tricks and skills that everyone could do and it was a delight to see all the kids maneuver through the course being cheered and encouraged with each bounce, skip and scoot!  My mom actually has a mini-video of me demonstrating the course ... but I'm far too proud to share that with you.  The kids did it better anyways!

At the end of the day, the kids were getting twitchy so we headed out to the front yard again.  After a little game of Keep the Beach Ball In the Air (that is it's technical name...) we pulled out our big frisbee, a Skyo, and played a random game of 500.  Without the trouble of keeping score.

It was fun to see the kids laughing as they vied to catch the big orange frisbee.  Seeing as the boys were bigger and brawnier than the girls, we had to handicap them a few rounds to give the girls a chance.  One time they had to stand with one hand behind their backs, cross their legs and hop.  Another time they had to put their hiney's on the fence while the girls got to stand closer to me as I tossed it in the air. Still another time, they had to lay on their bellies until the frisbee was airborne.  Remarkably, in spite of these severe disadvantages, the girls still couldn't seem to catch it!  And that was even more funny!

I was thrilled to see that during these two particular outside events, the kids had positive attitudes and truly cheered on their opponents.  (Or at least 98.57% of the time!)  In the midst of a lot of silliness, laughter and goofiness, kindness stole the show!

In fact, that I have decided to begin researching more games for this summer's Game Days.  So, if you find yourself looking for something to do on Wednesdays come June, the odds are good that we'll be hosting another Game Day and you're welcome to join us.  Just be sure to bring a snack, your excitement for playing, a good attitude and a kind spirit ... we'll provide the rest!

 12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, 
holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves 
with compassion, kindness, humility, 
gentleness and patience. 
(Colossians 3:12)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Snapshots of Spring Break ~ Creativity

Today is our last day of our Spring Break Stay-cation.  Bummer and Whew ... all in one breath!  It was fun and it was filled.  A most definitely fun-filled week with my kids.  Here's the first installment in this week's series Snapshots of Spring Break.

On Monday of last week, we headed to Hobby Lobby with a cash in my pocket and a list of crafty thoughts.  And spent all the money and made it all!

Before the paint started flying!  Look how clean they are. 

Ashley had several craft projects that she had received on her birthday so she was busy painting her music box and designing her little bling-covered butterflies.  She was so happy glitter glueing and sequining everything in reach.

I had a jewelry box with the dancing ballerina, too!

We painted wooden napkin rings that were personalized for each family member.  We even did a few extras for guests.  That way when you come to visit you don't have to worry about getting one of the nasty cloth napkins from the kids ... the one sealed shut with syrup.

Meticulous stripes.

Look at the smile on that happy crafter!

Aaron even worked on a paint by number - for a few numbers.

We make little clay figures.  And plenty of large clay figures.  After several hours of forming ladybugs, hearts and daggers, we peeled the plastic table cloth off the table and kitchen benches and tossed all the clay crumbs and dusty bits in the trash!  More about those little creations in a later post.

My favorite project was making cement stepping stones with the kids' handprints in each one.  They each added their own unique touches ... and trinkets.

Aaron's ginormous hand ... and an itty-bitty Lego guy.

Norah's handprint with one of her
gymnastic medals nestled inside.

How old is Ashley?  I think she's six. And she added the most bling to her stone.

Lydia's handprint turned out great ... her picture?
 Well ... let's just say that this was the best one.

During this intensely artistic day I confess I had moments of, "Don't touch anything!" and, "Hands up until I get you a paper towel!" and, "Nobody move!"  Please take note of the exclamation points ... they were used appropriately.  At one particular moment during our painting time, Aaron was headed to the sink with a thoroughly coated paint brush.  As he walked along, he kind of twirled the brush like baton.

"Hey, Buddy.  Be careful with that brush.  You don't want to drip paint."

"Okay, Mom."

Sitting at the table, I spotted him out of the corner of my eye rinsing his brush.  And flicking the brush up and down with paint flying up, down and all around.

"Hey, Buddy!  Watch it!"


He looked at me with obvious frustration on his face.

"Don't flick it, just let is sit under the running water."


"Hey." Deep breath, "I just don't want you to have to clean up a mess around the sink."

He then proceeded to walk to the refrigerator and wipe his still-paint-covered paint brush on my green checkered towel.

"Aaaahhhh!  Don't!"

"Uggghhh!  What am I supposed to do?!"

I stared at him in disbelief for just moment before launching into a bit of a mommy-tirade ...

"What do you mean, 'What am I supposed to do?'?! Use. Your. Paper. Towel."

Shining Mommy Moment ... twinkle, twinkle!

He shuffled back to his seat and I felt bad.  There is nothing quite as terrific as getting reamed while you're supposed to be having fun!

Looking back on this moment I am reminded with a grateful heart that this isn't how God operates.  He doesn't zing us when we mess up.  And He doesn't expect us to already know how to do everything.  He gave us His Bible for the purpose of giving us the necessary instructions and directions in life and then He gave us His Son for when we blow it anyways.

16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful 
for teaching, rebuking, correcting and 
training in righteousness, 17 so that the 
servant of God may be thoroughly 
equipped for every good work. 
(2 Timothy 3:16-17)

This is the same way I want to train up my kids ... with clear instructions and a lot of grace.

This 45 second interaction was a vivid reminder for me that my kids still have a lot to learn and I still have a lot of years to instruct, remind, forgive and re-direct.  And instruct, remind, forgive and re-direct.  And ... instruct, remind, forgive and re-direct.  That is the patient and persevering job of a parent.

And I'm in it for the long-haul.  With God's help.

4 Fathers [and Mothers], do not exasperate 
your children; instead, bring them up in the 
training and instruction of the Lord.  
(Ephesians 6:4, addition mine)

Friday, March 9, 2012

Five Plus One - Spring Break

Today is special for a lot of reasons ...

... Ashley has been six years old for 24 hours.  Six.  Years.  Old.
... Gramps and Grammy arrive this afternoon for tomorrow's birthday party.  Hope they're well rested.
... The house is undergoing a bit of a sprucing-up.  Or at least it will smell that way.
... Aaron is doing an art project that requires him to sit silently and without moving for 20 minutes (ought to be interesting).
... Norah is on the cusp of a gymnastics break ... or starvation, depending on who you talk to.
... Lydia ... well, everyday is special with Lydia.
... The kids are home for ten days for Spring Break!
... And I'm off playing, too ... capturing a variety of amusing vignettes to share with you.  Later.

Spring Break:  playing now, storytelling later!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Time-Warp Wednesday ~ Ashley

Six years ago tomorrow our family grew a bit as we welcomed our little LeLe Mae into our hearts and into our home.  Aaron and Norah loved that little sweetie right off the bat!  They would hold her, "read" to her and play with her by putting rainbow clown wigs on her bald little head.  Such love!

In our little blue house they would peek in on her while she slept and pile on the couch with Brett or I to peek at her tiny toes.  They loved being squished together.

They still do.

We have added another little monkey and moved to a bigger house, and they still love to squeeze into the same spot - smooshed and smashed.  Giggling and wiggling with squeals of, "You're scrunching me!"  We encourage them to spread out, but it's more fun to be a part of the dog pile.

Especially if there's an iPod involved.

Happy 6th birthday, Ashley!  

I love you!  You are a girly-girl through and through and you bring bright, sparkling joy to my life.  I'll snuggle in the lazy-boy with you anytime, just to listen to you read.  You are my super-duper cleaner-upper; my silly-giggling, goofy-face-maker princess; my sing-humming-whistling music maker and my cuddle-bug, rub-my-back-please snuggler.  Smooches to you!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Life Set to Music

I have often thought that if life were a musical, it would be more fun!  Actually this past weekend, the kids and I were brainstorming about our upcoming Spring Break Stay-cation and Norah and I voted that one day should be a musical morning!

Everything would be set to music ... we would sing out the breakfast options, sing through quarrels and sing our way through folding the laundry.  Unfortunately, the other family member voted it down.  I guess Norah and I could always have our own mini-musical morning ... just to drive the rest of the family nuts!

I think this is genetic, by the way.  My mom can turn anything into a song and she claims that she learned it from her grandmother.  I think it's a wonderful inheritance!

Here are a few little ditties from my youngest.  She may not get all the words and letters right, but she is aspiring to have her life set to music, too.  And that makes me happy because a singing child is a happy child!

Actually the Psalms in the Old Testament are filled with songs!  The writers of the Psalms often wrote with the purpose of calling the people to worship in song because music is a gift from God ... an opportunity for us to turn our hearts and voices to Him.  And when we do that, joy will follow.

Take time today to make a joyful noise to God!  I think you'll find some happiness there, too!

3 He put a new song in my mouth, 
   a hymn of praise to our God. 
Many will see and fear the LORD 
   and put their trust in him.
Psalm 40:3

Monday, March 5, 2012

Snapshots of the Heart Continues ...

Happy March 5th!  That means the virtue for today that I'm praying for my kids (again) is Self-Control.  Which is perfect because they still have some little (and big) areas of life that need a little help.  Don't we all?

That is one thing I really love about these daily prayer prompts ... as each month refreshes itself, we have the opportunity to refresh our prayers for our kids!

I have included with this final day of Snapshots of the Heart a gift for you.  All the virtues and their accompanying Bible verses are included below (via Scribd).  I currently have each of them printed, cut, laminated and ready to display on our kitchen table in this nifty little holder that we made at MOPS recently.

Happy Praying!

If you are just joining this series ... 
click on the left for the whole month's worth of prayer prompts!

31 Virtues Cards

Friday, March 2, 2012

Snapshots of the Heart ~ Heart for Missions

We have family and friends across the globe who humbly carry the title of missionary.

We have missionaries from our church who share the Gospel in a variety of languages.

We have friends in dark places who rejoice in how God's light is shining brightly.

We have six people around our kitchen table who happily reflect Jesus to those they meet.

Planted here to bloom for Him.

"Lord, please help my children to develop 
a desire to see your glory declared 
among the nations, your marvelous 
deeds among all peoples."  
Psalm 96:3

Come back on Monday for the wrap up of this series: 
Snapshots of the Heart.  
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Snapshots of the Heart ~ Gratitude

I really do try not to love things.  But it's not easy.

I often need to make a concentrated effort to not get caught up in the value of my possessions.  Instead, I want to be grateful for the people who surround me, this life that God has blessed me with and the good health that I enjoy.  I want to focus on the joy that my kids give me, the pleasure of sharing a good laugh with Brett and the privilege of being home with my babies.

But sometimes ...

I just really love my stuff.

In particular, the new sectional we bought about a month ago.  I'm afraid I have fallen in love with it!

I love that it fits our room so well.

I love that our entire family can sit on the couch together to watch a show.

I love that there is actually room for us to grow.  And still fit.

I love that when we have guests over, no one has to sit on the floor or hearth.

I love that the kids like to nestle into the corner-seat, snuggled under a blanket.

I love that Brett and I still sit side-by-side, even if the sofa is vast.

I love that it still looks clean.

And I love that from about two to three o'clock, the chaise portion of the couch is in the sun.

That is my absolute favoritestest seat in the house.

Just this past Sunday, I sprawled across that particular cushion as it lay bathed in sunshine and read a book.  For an hour.  When I finally pulled myself away from the story, my sun-baked brain felt foggy.  It was awesome.

So while it's true that I am grateful for Ashley's hysterical, maniacal, wet-my-pants-able laughter, Aaron's sneak-up-behind-you hugs, Norah's cartwheel-from-here-to-there trips to the kitchen, Lydia's speedy rendition of "Jingle Bells" and Brett's willingness to admit that Cowboys and Aliens was a terrible movie ... I love my sunny seat.

Just don't tell the kids.  I'm trying to teach them not to put too much importance on things.

And I don't want them to take my place in the sun.

"Help my children to live lives that are always overflowing 
with thankfulness and always giving thanks to 
God the Father for everything,
 in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."  
Ephesians 5:20 & Colossians 2:7

Prompt #3 ~ My spot in the house.

Mama’s Losin’ It