Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A little Get-away!

Two weeks after we brought Savannah home my husband came home from work, pulled up this adorable cabin on the lap-top, and informed me we were going there for a long weekend in July. Dave is pretty good at sweet surprises for me and all of us and this is one that tops the list! It was perfect for our season of life right now. Secluded, private, quiet country side cabin sitting on top a hill looking out over some of the Midwest's beautiful country hill sides and fields. We were smack in the middle of no-where (no, really...the closest fountain soda pop for my hubs was 45 min away!). I loved everything about it... the stillness, the constant breeze, the birds singing, the crickets chirping, the boys running through trails in the woods, the stars at night, and the very undistracted few days with just our crew. It was really great. We celebrated 12 years of marriage and Carson's 2nd birthday all on this trip... I would go back in a heart-beat and would love to whisp my girlfriends away for a little quiet girls trip some day... wink, wink...hint, hint... :)

The view was so peaceful I have to share some of those pics...people pics tomorrow on another post!

The sun rose every morning to the sound of birds welcoming us and this view to take our breathe away...
and our little otter friend was usually waiting for us first thing in that pond.
The rustle of corn stalks swaying with the wind put me to sleep most nights. Wonderful.
And my boys had dozen of wild flowers to pick for daily fresh bouquets.
The moon was so big out there in the open!
From our place you could see 4 farms nestled in the hills...a rooster or two to say hello every morning!
Mornings started here usually...not a bad way to start a day!
The boys walked, ran, and skipped down this road dozens of times...
Three brothers...
Wide open spaces...a little boys dream :)

Friday, July 26, 2013

summer swimming

Four kids and two of them 2 and younger...one a newborn. This is what it took for me to not buy a family pool pass for the first time years. Years! But, this summer is a one-of-a-kind different summer for us and in so many ways it is proving to be just as wonderful. Grandma Pat helped invest in a little bigger pool for our backyard and the boys have had a blast in it this summer. I almost don't even miss the big pool! (Gasp!) They start at 10am some days and some nights are heading up to the porch sopping wet from it right up til bedtime. It's really been a fun summer of swimming in the yard and these three make the most of it...

Friday, July 19, 2013

wild man!

This wild man of a boy is almost 2! On Monday actually!! We will be driving back from vacation on his birthday, again, so before we get away... a look at one year ago...he hasn't stopped moving!

Monday, July 15, 2013

snuggle bugs

Austin is our biggest snuggler, but some days just end like this...

 with everyone snuggled together after a long summer day outside...

 and their bodies are as tired as their fun tank is full...

 and it just leads right into snuggley mornings too! Love my snuggle bugs and this season when they still climb right into bed to lean up against us and just hang out in Mom & Dad's bed!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Tiger Camp

Being the oldest has its perks. Austin thinks his big brother is super cool getting to try lots of new things this summer... many firsts happening here as Jaxon goes on his first trip without us (Youth Art Team went to Chicago!!), church camp (with best cousin pal, Kyler), and his first Tiger basketball camp! Jaxon has more of a social calendar then I do these days and I think Austin is watching closely looking forward to what is ahead for him. Jax has loved all these things so far and the new freedoms are giving him some confidence as he steps into the middle years of childhood.

Jaxon went to camp with a couple good buddies. They had a blast! And Jaxon's "coach" was a high-school boy who goes to church with us, so he loved that too. 

They scrimmaged each day and we went to watch the last day...Jaxon was pleased to announce they were undefeated...

 Until the last day! Maybe we were bad luck? :)

Still fun to watch though and oh, how they have grown since last summer! (much thanks to his winter basketball coaches who taught many fundamentals for this growing stage of learning the game).

Jaxon, "coach Lewis", and the team!

Cam, Jax, and Gabe! (Jaxon was so excited to come home from camp with first place medals for free-throw contest, hot shot, & lay-up contests...not that he wore his medals for two days or anything or has worn his camp shirt 75% of the summer :).

Saturday, July 6, 2013

summer mornings

My kids just function better with some regular routine in their lives. Or maybe thats me? Either way, our days go better when we have had a little bit of a plan for how we spend our time. This is a very loose routine though and much of our day is done by hourly decisions made for us, especially with a newly babe in the mix here now. One thing we try to do each morning is keep our morning Bible breakfast time and a little time spent on math or reading/writing time. For two reasons... I want my kids to be comfortable with their Bibles and that doesn't happen if we don't regularly dig into them together. By bedtime we are just tired, so mornings are our better option as we all come alert and ready to hear God's word. Second... I love learning alongside my kids and keeping them somewhat involved in their academic path during the slower summer months. 

So our back-porch table has been our gathering point many mornings this summer and I really enjoy the days that this works our for us. The boys enjoy it most days, I keep the learning fun and age appropriate, and there is always a yummy snack afterwards and good coffee for me during it :)  Love this short season of learning together on beautiful summer mornings with a sweet baby girl resting on my shoulder or in her bassinet...and my wild toddler tagging along, spit-fire and all!!

Friday, July 5, 2013

back-porch bedtime!

It is no secret that we live in our back-yard this time of year. We love the outdoors, the sunshine, and fresh air...the space to be creative and free and peaceful and together. I would gladly give up indoor space for the gift of extra outside space to live in any day. I hope as the years go by that our children continue to love the beauty that our green space gives us. This is the first year the big boys have been brave enough to sleep on the back-porch all night...by themselves! The cooler nights have been perfect and other then the early bird sing-song wake-up call, it is a fun little experience.

 First night on the porch...

 Snuggled together for bedtime book reading...

And out before the night was totally dark around them...

The air mattress bed became a popular reading spot for a few days then...

I love seeing my kids read and we try to do a lot of it here...

What a great spot to snuggle little sisters, too...

Thank you summer for perfect back-porch weather this year!