Saturday, June 13, 2009


Courage: That quality of mind which enables one to encounter danger and difficulties with firmness, or without fear, or fainting of heart; valor; boldness; resolution.
- Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary

I want to take a moment and introduce you to the newest member of our family: Courage, an Olde Victorian Bulldogge.

He is 2 1/2 months old and weighs 20 lbs.

Simeon took right to him. In fact, he has somewhat claimed him for his own. He wants to be the one to walk him, feed him, play with him, and train him. Simeon is very excited to have a dog - and I think the dog is very excited to have Simeon.

Abbi is adjusting well to Courage. When we first brought Courage home, Abbi was a little nervous around him. As long as she approached him, she was fine, but when Courage approached her (unannounced), then she was ready for him to go back to his home. Now she does wonderfully with him. One thing that helped was the fact that he loves shoes - once she realized that he has the same shoe fetish as she does, they became great friends. He comes to her unannounced and she reaches out to pet him very lovingly. She also always has to make sure she hugs and kisses him every night.

Abe... hmmm... Either Abe thinks he is a dog or Courage thinks he is a boy. They are both the same weight and approximately the same age (if you go by dog years). Those two are together all the time - best friends. I have found Abe sharing everything from his drink, his cheerios, to his blocks with Courage. Courage, in turn, shares his pillow and chew toys with Abraham.

Courage is a good dog. He is great with the kids and very gentle with them - he reads them very well. He's grown quite attached to them, to the point that he pouts and whines when the kids go to bed at night. He curls up next to the door and whimpers - it's pretty cute. And, much to Daddy and Mommy's pleasure, he is doing well in both obedience training and potty training :).

If you would like to read more about Courage's breed, go here.

"A righteous man cares for the life of his animal..."

- Proverbs 12:10a

Friday, June 12, 2009

Mother's Day

So I'm a little behind, ok, I'm a lot behind, but I just wanted to post a picture of Mother's Day before Father's Day got here!

"Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward."

-Psalm 127:3

Friday, June 5, 2009

The beach

A couple of weekends ago our family took a little "big" adventure. We introduced our kids to the beach, and oh what an introduction it was. That first moment of the children seeing the beach for the first time fit right in the list with watching your child take his first step or hear his first word. As we were driving to the beach, the kids asked tons of questions such as "Are there sharks in the water?" or "Will the crabs pinch us?"or "What if we get stung by a jellyfish?". They were beginning to get a little hesitant about this whole "beach thing." But one look at the ocean and it was love at first sight.

Simeon had no fear at all and would have stayed there all day if possible. He and Mark went out as far as allowed and battled the waves.

Abbi enjoyed looking at the water but was happier with the large sandbox at her disposal. She spent a little time in the water with Mark and then ventured out on her own, but as you can see once the water touched her...well, I'll just let the picture speak for itself.

Abe of course was just happy to be there. He loved the water and he loved the sand. What else could a boy ask for ( Maybe a dog? - that will be next)?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Favorite things

Just stopping in to say "hello" and show a couple of my children's favorite activities. Hopefully next time I will come and stay awhile. But for now, this is all.

Arrrgh, matey!

A horse and his boy.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Dressing up

He's not so sure about dressing up...

but this one loves it!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

My Favorite Cookies

I am running low on things to post for right now, so I am going to share my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe.  It is a combination of recipes. I just kept substituting ingredients until I came up with one I liked.  Feel free to substitute ingredients as you see fit.  The kids like M&M's instead of chocolate chips.

          1 cup buttered flavor shortening
          1 1/2 cups brown sugar
          2 eggs
          1 tsp. vanilla
          2 1/4 cups ap flour
          1 tsp salt
          1 tsp baking soda
          1 1/2 - 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

I generally mix the first 4 ingredients together and then add the dry ingredients.  I add chocolate chips last.

Bake at 375 for 7 minutes.  Take them out of the oven but leave them on the pan for 3 more minutes.  If you choose to take the cookies off the pan immediately, they will be doughy.  If you choose to bake them for 9 minutes, they will be crispier.    

Just an idea of what to do with extra cookie dough over at bakerella.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

teachable moments and little helpers

So we have begun a new year and I am still planning out my goals for what I would like to see this year hold for me and my family. Of course I already have a few of the basics lined out on paper, such as get up earlier, lose weight, stick to a schedule, be more organized, etc. - you get the point. Now I am filling in the details and those details seem to hit me right in the face sometimes, making sure that I know that that area of my life needs some improvement. 

So here are two specific goals for this year (and hopefully they will improve with every year):
* more teachable moments with my kids
* encouraging my kids to be helpers

It's funny how when you have one child, you can take all the time in the world to watch a bug. To see where it goes, follow its path, discuss what kind of bug it is, and maybe even make a life lesson out of it. But now with three kids, it seems as though I barely have enough time to keep one kid from slaying the bug with his sword (which I am thankful for when there are spiders around) and keep another kid from picking up the bug and loving it, all while trying to get the smallest kid to even pay attention to it, let alone to try to teach them anything about the bug.

These ages are GREAT for teaching. So I am looking for opportunities to teach my kids and to make daily life activities or chores as we know them - fun! My children beg me sometimes for me to let them help me. Unfortunately, my first response is not always "yes". I know that I can get things done a whole lot faster by doing a job by myself, but what will that prove? Granted, there are times when this needs to be done, but most of the time I would say that the more help the merrier! By allowing them to help, I am creating a sense of accomplishment, providing an opportunity for learning organization, teamwork, and the list goes on, not to mention the family time we spend together while cleaning!