Sunday, May 19, 2013

It's What I Love About Sundays

I have always been a believer in God.  In fact, without my faith, I'm not sure that I would have made it through some of the things that I have faced in my life.  But, it wasn't until this past year that I openly confessed my belief in Jesus as my savior, and on March 3rd I was baptized at Lebanon Christian Church. 
Sundays have become one of my favorite days of the week since I started going to church in Lebanon.  Not only do I get the chance to worship, but it has led to a tradition that I often dreamed of having as a child.  Almost every Sunday after church, we head over to my dad's for lunch.  The kids are able to play with my younger sisters and brother, and I am able to spend that time with that part of my family that I had been missing out on.
I am so grateful for a church that has welcomed us with open arms.  They never seem overwhelmed when I bring all 4 two year olds into the nursery (Today was there first day in the 2's room, by the way)...they always just smile and start to love on them right away.  Even more, I am thankful for the family that I get to spend these special Sundays with.  These are the days I want my children to cherish as much as I do.
This picture of Lilya and John reminds me of my Uncle Kevin and I.  We didn't have much more of an age difference, and I looked up to him so much (still do).  I know that these two are going to be such great friends through their lives...she already loves him so much!

Had to include this picture.  I love these girls so much.  They are such good aunts to my kiddos when we come over on Sundays.  I remember how bad I wanted a baby when I found out that my dad and Margaret were expecting twins.  I also remember how that feeling faded the first time I kept all three of these girls ;).  I am so glad that He is in control, and now 10 years later, we are surrounded by beautiful! 

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Fun on the Farm

One of the biggest challenges I have experienced as the mother of 5, is how to give my kiddos the experiences that they need and deserve.  This is a challeng for a couple of different reasons.  The first, and probably the least of the two, is the energy it takes to get 5 ready, pack supplies, load into the car, load stroller or wagon, unload, have fun, load back up, unload again when we get home.  Just getting them in and out of the van is quite a chore.  But, the biggest reason for this challenge is the cost.  If you have gone to the movies, the zoo, any sporting event, etc. lately, you know what I'm talking about.  We are not quite at a movie viewing age yet, but I'm already dreading it.  With 5 kids and 2 adults, a trip to the movies will surely cost us over $100.  I'm sure that we will be seeing a lot of the free matines that are offered. ;)
With all of that in mind, I'm thankful for days like today when we can get out of the house and have fun for under $20.  We spent a little while this morning at High Hopes Farm.  It was a beautiful day, and although I had to pull our 100 lb wagon up the drive, it was wide open enough that they could get out and run and play.  They were able to feed some animals (they didn't like that the goats were trying to eat their clothes.), take a wagon ride, play, check out what the garden looked like, and just enjoy the outdoors on a beautiful day.  I'm so thankful to know the Wood family, and am glad that they opened up their farm for this event today.
The wagon migh look like a cool way to travel, and if I got to ride in one of the cars, I might think so too.  Problem is, it's
HEAVY!  Pulling it in the grass is not fun either.  Glad they could get out and run!

Harrison loved the horse, but still a little unsure about petting.

The boys are off to visit with the horse.

Our little horse whisperer.

Xavier and Lilya checking out the donkey.

They loved watching the farm animals.  The baby goats, Grant and Abraham Lincoln, were a hit!

Love that Anne could bring her niece and nephew too!  This is the best that I could get with all 7 kiddos checking out the goats.

Oscar loved watching the horse eat!

I think we're going to have to buy one of these for our swingset.

Xavier and Lilya playing on the teeter totter

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Guess Who's 2?!?

Well, I guess the fact that it's been a whole year since I posted last, has it's don't have to look back far to compare how they've changed in the last year. ;)

It is hard to believe that our little miracles turned 2 today!  We celebrated on Sunday (Mother's Day) with a Sesame Street themed party.  They of course got more gifts than what we have roomed for, and had so much fun playing with family and friends. 

This has been a year full of many more firsts.  Here's a brief run down of some of the major ones that I can recall off of the top of my head :

                        * First steps (for everyone: the boys were first, and Jaylyn followed a couple months 
                        *First question (Usually sounds something like this, "Mommy, where are you?")
                        *First plane ride, hotel stay, National t.v. show appearance (Kathie Lee and Hoda
                        *First surgery (Harrison had a needle removed from his foot)
                        *First double ear infections (Benjamin and Harrison)= first round of antibiotics for all
                        *First experience with Mommy working another full time job

I'm sure there were so many other things that have happened over the last year...I guess that should be motivation for me to post more often.  For now, here are a few pictures to catch you up.


Introducing the newly 2 year old, Oscar James.  A few of his favorite things:  Playing ring-around-the rosies with his brother, Ben, being outside, sleeping with his blanket, eating Deedee's cat food (yep, I said it...we have to hide the cat food), singing, dancing, and playing the harmonica.  He is a Daddy's boy, and cries every morning when Tony leaves for work.


Next up, Benjamin Ryne (a.k.a. Big Ben).  He might be the biggest, but he is the most gentle of our crew.  This is a rare shot of him without his pup pup and his pappie (pacifier) which he asks for often.  I have realized lately that he is the mediator of our children.  Just a few days ago, Harrison made Jaylyn cry, and I heard Ben say, "Harrison, hug, Jay!"  Best part was that Harrison actually listened and knelt down and hugged Jaylyn.  He is also the best talker of the bunch, and I love that he calls everyone by their name when talking to them...I especially love when he says, "Love you, Mommy!"  He loves to run around the house, play ring-around-the-rosies with Oscar, and wrestle with his brothers and sisters.  He also loves to sing and dance like Oscar.  We are hoping that he will outgrow the little bit of asthma that he has, so that he can enjoy all of these activities to the fullest!

And, Jaylyn Rae.  You will rarely see this little peanut without a blankie and her fingers in her mouth.  Although she is still wearing 12 month clothes on her second birthday, this little firecracker can hold her own.  Her favorite word is "nope", and in case you don't quite get it, she sometimes will add a little smack to the face to go along with it.  She loves snacks...just like her sister, and she keeps up with the boys as they run laps around our house.  She is the best eater of the four, and makes it a wonder that she is so much tinier than they are.

Last, but in no way, least, I give you Harrison Kerry.  Definitely the most energetic of the bunch, he has that smile that just screams, "I'm up to something!"  A needle in the bottom of his foot, a bout with the flu, a double ear infection...nothing could slow this kid down.  He is constantly on the go.  Just like the others, he loves to sing and dance, and would much rather be outside than inside no matter what the weather.  While he has such an onry side, he is also very willing to share with his brothers and sisters, and can be very loving too.   Our favorite game to play when we put them in bed at night is the "I LOVE YOU" game.  He screams, "LOVE YOU" and we answer the same over and over even after we have left the room. :)

I shouldn't leave out this incredibly grown up little one.  I cannont believe that Lilya Catharine will be 5 in less than 4 months.  How is that possible?  She has her moments where she loves to tease and torment her little brothers and sister, but she is also very quick to comfort, soothe and love on them.  It is so fun to watch their sibling relationships blossom. 

 Just a few pictures from Sunday's Birthday Party:
Playing on the table after everyone left.
Present time...yes, there is a Santa bag ;)  (it did kind of look like Christmas at our house!)
Time to sing Happy Birthday! 

I'm so thankful for all of the blessings in my life!