over here


Here’s a little bit of what we’ve been up to over here.  We cut down a monster of a Christmas tree.  It looked so much smaller out in the forest.  But it’s all decked out and we’re loving it.  Emma’s favorite thing is to turn off all the lights and just “look at it until we fall asleep.”  Which we haven’t actually done (the falling asleep part), but it’s fun to plan I suppose.



Our house has been full of imaginative play this week.  I’m listening in to all the castle building and pirate shipping and lego creating while finishing up some last minute sewing and knitting.

They spent most of one day with the blocks.  Caleb was mostly not helping so they took turns pushing him around the house in a box which he absolutely loved.





I hope your house is full of laughter too!  Merry Christmas!



We’re loving this fall weather.  We took some time on Saturday to have a little picnic and play in the creek.  We also dug up some pine trees to transplant near our house.  The weather was just perfect.

IMG_2510  IMG_2526  IMG_2570There was just enough water in the creek for a little splashing.  Mason helped daddy dig up the trees and Caleb and I brought buckets of water to them from the creek.  Emma was drawing in her notebook. Caleb was quite the little helper.  He insisted on carrying it himself even though it was too heavy.  It took us about 4 times as long, but we were smiling the whole time.

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We also picked a bunch of rose hips to dry for tea.  Emma would pick them and hand them to Caleb who would put them in the bag.  Quite the team.  Mason and daddy totally out-picked us though.

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They were loving exploring and playing with all the different leaves and twigs they could find.  We are having a little family competition on guessing the number of “nice” days we have left.  Hopefully there’s a few more in the near future!


The end of September is just around the corner and we’re finally just getting into a good routine around here.  We’ve been super busy with the gardens, canning, regular day to day stuff and school.  With so many ways to spend my limited free time (knitting, stamping, baking) I came to the realization yesterday that I haven’t actually mopped my kitchen floor since before school began.  Sweeping…yes.  Mopping…no.  The worst part is that I actually moved all the chairs and shoes and backpacks and legos off the floor and swept it with the intention of mopping one night where I found an extra burst of energy. Then I got distracted.  And we moved the chairs back in for breakfast the next morning.  No mopping.  I’m totally okay with this.

We’re reading.  And coloring.  And having picnics. And watching the leaves change. And creating things with lots of cutting and gluing.  And making smoothies.

Some first day of school pictures:


We also squeezed in a rodeo night at the fair with our cousins and a wedding for Uncle Tim.  We’re loving all our time with family and friends as we gear up for fall.


IMG_20150821_100434We’ve been working on harvesting a lot of the garden.  We pickled the green beans (our new favorite thing to do with them) and froze all the peas.  We made some of the zucchini into bread and we’ve been enjoying fresh tomatoes along with dinner.

This weekend we were all out in the garden.  Mason and I were picking all the peas.  Emma and Caleb were eating them.  Every time we would move the colander down the row, Emma would get mad at us.  At one point I smiled at her and said, “well, we’re the ones doing the work.”  She looked sweetly up at me and said, “Mom!  I’m working too!  I’m working on eating these peas!”

And another one from Emma’s world:

Emma: Mom, can you cover up my baby?

Me: Sure. (Pulling the blanket up over her baby doll, tucked under her chin)

Emma: No Mom,  all of baby.  Her face is cold too.

Me: (covering all of baby) How is she going to breathe then?

Emma: (Looking at me like I’m crazy)  Mom, she doesn’t breathe.  She’s a FAKE!

And because school is officially starting tomorrow and for the next 9 months I will be teacher and mom and the one sending Mason to 1st Grade and Emma to Preschool (already!): Dear Teachers: You’re Not Fooling Me.

the pirate ship

This summer has been all about building the pirate ship.  It’s been the go-to answer for Mason and Emma.


Why do you need all those buckets of water?  It’s for the pirate ship.

What are all those rocks for?  It’s gold for our pirate ship.


I need my hammer, tape measure and screwdrivers.  Why?  It’s for the pirate ship. IMG_20150717_080003_hdr

We must cover everything with a layer of mud.  Oh really?  It’s for the pirate ship. To protect it from the rain. IMG_20150717_075935_hdr

I need to dig holes all over the yard.  It’s for the pirate ship.  Seriously mom. IMG_20150620_145153I have yet to see any signs of a pirate ship, but the thought of it is sure keeping them outside and busy.


We recently bought some land from our neighbors at the end of our road.  They are a retired couple that have lived here for quite a while.  We see the husband quite often as he rides his horse down our road checking cattle or drives his tractor to plow out neighbors.  The kids are usually outside playing and they always stop to wave and say hello.

At the closing we were sitting around the table chatting and exchanging stories.  The wife starts to laugh and asks her husband to tell us the nicknames he’s given our kids.  Mason is little R.  Caleb is just baby.  And Emma is…Hollywood.  Ryan and I are still laughing about that one.  Nail.hit.on.head.


IMG_2225It’s really  hard to believe this sweet girl is four.  Seriously.  How did four years just fly by?  It’s sure been a whirlwind of adventure! IMG_2219 Emma-girl we just love so much about you.  You are just as feisty as ever.   We joke that the line from a country song “sunshine mixed with a little hurricane” pretty much sums you up.  We love your endless energy and cheerful face.  We find ourselves trying to navigate this whole parenting thing with your strong will and surprise emotions.  We always end the day with hugs and laughs at your antics though.   IMG_2231

Some of your favorite things right now include your bear blanket and baby doll.  You love cowgirl boots and twirly skirts.  You love to be outside, except for those silly hennies and that rooster.  You bring your rooster-gettin’ umbrella out to protect you.  You love your brothers too.  Playing with Mason and taking care of Caleb consume much of your day.  You love to wave at the window whenever anyone leaves.  And you still love to be held.

You have a knack for procrastination.  It takes you a loooong time to get dressed, but you love to do it all by yourself.  You look at every single pair of pants, dresses, and skirts you own before making a choice.  Then you look at all your shirts.  Then it’s the accessories.  You have a quirky sense of style that we love.  You can also drag out bedtime with the best of them.  We sing a song and pray and then you have to tell me oh-so-many-important-things before I can get out of your room.  I do love your wrap around the neck hugs and sweet snuggles.

Most mornings when we ask how you slept you reply with “I didn’t sleep at ALL!”  And you’ve also been known to shovel food into our mouth while saying, “I don’t really like this, but I guess I’ll eat it.”  You do eat most things though. You don’t care for oranges, cantaloupe, or peaches but everything else is fair game.  Your favorites are mac and cheese, applesauce, spaghetti, and fried eggs.


You love to sing and dance.  You make up lots of songs and ballet moves.  You also love to play with your kitchen, build with legos, and draw and color.  You know all your letters and numbers and will write up all sorts of lists and letters to people.  You are really good at putting together puzzles.  You crack us up with the words you use.  Your play is definitely influenced by having an older brother.  Most games turn into some sort of hunting, battle, or some other endeavor where you need your sword.  IMG_2247

You are learning so much about everything around you.  You are a constant joy to us.  These past four years have been nothing short of blessing after blessing with you.  We love you more than you will ever know.