Stuff and Nonsense

Yesterday Ava was singing, "Oh my brother, Oh my brother, Oh my broooother AlecandBenji! You were born to hug and kiss me, so I loovee yooouuuu!"   The boys were mortified. I thought it was adorable.   She actually tried to plant one on Alec's cheek the other day on our sidewalk while they were scootering with a friend. Not a popular choice!


Ava has become such a little lady, and so motherly. She hates it when the boys are crying or upset and tries to comfort them at all costs. Even when they try to hit her. It's so sweet. I really and truly hope that Jesus sees fit to bless us with one (or two or more!) more children!! My three would be so wonderful with the new baby/ies.


We don't allow sleepovers. I don't enjoy hosting noisy children in the middle of the night, and we just (for many reasons) don't allow our children to sleep at other people's houses. Except family, of course...and ONE of our friends. She makes the boys go to bed at their actual bedtime! And I just feel very comfortable with the way she runs things.

Anyway, I say all that to say this:
I allowed Alec to sleep over with that particular friend on Wednesday night...and then he had a "late-over" (our compromise for no sleep overs) with another friend on Thursday night. Um, what was I thinking??? Can you say 10 year old zombie yesterday? Yeah.

Thankfully, Benji had gone off early in the morning yesterday to have his special one-on-one day with my parents, so the quarreling was non-existent. Ava was quiet because she had no one to pick a fight with, and Alec was quiet because he was asleep on his feet.

I gotta say, it was weird with only two kids...what the heck did I do before I had Ava? It was almost boring yesterday!! Haha! And just way too quiet...
I'm so thankful for my three musketeers!
I took the A's (what I call Ava and Alec in my head) to see a movie and treated them to Krispy Kreme donuts (because it's something they can't enjoy with Benji due to his allergies) and we had a good time...but I missed Benji terribly!!

I will say, though, it did give me some insight into who instigates squabbles around here. Immediately upon arrival that evening, Benji stirred it up, whining to Alec about wanting him to play Legos and yelling at Ava because she had her feet in the wrong place. In all fairness, it was nearly 8:00 and everyone was tired, but the change in dynamics between the three of them was dramatic.

I do think part of the "Betty Crocker" syndrome (always mixin' it up!) is Benji's age, and the age gaps between he and his siblings. I always think things like, "oh, we made a mistake, we should have had them just a little closer together" or stuff like that, but then am smacked in the face by the realization that God doesn't make ANY mistakes, EVER, and He is the one that planned them, not us!!!


Today we are going to my aunt and uncle's house to send off a cousin of mine who got accepted into a military flight program (I think?). Something like that...
I love my two aunts and two uncles, we don't see them nearly enough. Both sets live only an hour away, but for some reason it turns into a herculean effort to get together.
Anyway, I'm looking forward to seeing all of them. My cousin who is leaving has a wife who is newly pregnant. They are totally adorable, and LOVE our kids. My other cousin is newly married, and he and his bride are so cute, too. 
It's funny to me to watch them and think we were there once...and now how much more we know now! Sometimes I think I'd like to go back...but sometimes I'm not so sure. We've come a long way, over many humps and bumps and are so much wiser now...but have still a long way to go!


The picture of the sky up there is because I love the sky. All the time, no matter where we are, or what state we are in, I'm always obsessed with the sky. Perhaps it's all the beautiful colors (I never see just blue sky and white clouds...too me it's always hundreds of colors), the texture of the clouds, the changing light, the unpredictability, but sameness...I'm not sure.
Sometimes in my head I try and decide how I would paint a particular sky or cloud...and sometimes, like a child, I wonder if heaven really is up in the sky, on a cloud. 
For what ever reason, the sky captivates me...


Have a great weekend!  
Notice the sky today...and your children...and your husband!


Once upon a time, not so long ago...

My mom had recently been showing Ava old photos of my childhood. I picked up an album that had been left out and opened the cover to see what they had been looking at. 

As I turned the yellowed pages, I was captured by the beauty of my mother's youth, how carefree my aunt was, the happy smiles on the faces of my grandparents. I saw the love in my dad's eyes as he cradled an infant me, and the the gummy, wet grin of my toddler brother. I revisited my grandmother and grandfather in their old house, smelled the familiar comforting smell of their store, and remembered things about my uncle.

I was suddenly captured by a wistful urge to go back...not for my sake, but for the sake of my mother. To give her a chance to snuggle my chubby baby brother again, to let her walk the beach and gather shells with my tiny hand in hers. To let her find herself back in the apple orchard with my grandma and grandpa, to help my dad plan crazy birthday parties for me and my friends. To go, just once more, back into the kitchen with HER mother and laugh as they fixed dinner.

As quickly as that urge came, it went, and was replaced with the realization that I was living those moments right now. Holding a tiny hand, laughing in the kitchen with MY mother, watching my children run to Daddy for hugs, playing with them in the sand,  making an album of my own, my children's childhood memories.

How dare I push those moments aside in favor of selfish pursuits? 

You can never go back...only forward...and hope that you are using up every bit of time you are given making the best, most beautiful memories you can.

{my mother and I, on the beach at Cape May, on the east coast}


Wordless Wednesday


When you go to the family farm...

You never know how dirty you'll get...

or what you'll find growing...

You might find some pretty things to photograph...

Your parents will probably have fun...

Your kids might learn something new...

or hone a valuable skill like waiting...

There could be treats and a snapping fire...

and your usually obedient dog might, just maybe, need a leash!


here comes the SUN

Good friends, good food, good weather
smiling faces, tinkling laughter
blessings from the One who knows what is best

It will go all too quickly...


How do you...

...move a mountain?

You could stare at it a while in hopes that it will disappear...

 You could ignore the inevitable and just lay down...

You could grab a pair of these and get to workin'...

and try to be just like Daddy...

Or you could play "giant" and just call it a day!


last weekend

we packed this

and this

and set off to explore

to find what was in the water

what was on the water

how to move the water

 what was on land

and how to have a really good time no matter how hot we are!


company for dinner

hot kitchen,
the loud fan lies to my skin

chopping board
 silver knife, emerald lettuce

my hair dances in the breeze and sticks to my face
ruby red watermelon drips on the floor
fragrant onion sings in the pan

salty slivers of anchovy
 creamy golden egg yolk

big yellow bowl on my black counter top
 forks for 12

 bon appetit!

two black puppies
7 happy children
plastic cups sweating on the table

sharing memories, making new ones
steamy summer night
 bare feet picking up gravel on the sidewalk

car doors interrupt the humid silence
voices drift across the dark dry grass

let's do it again soon!



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