Friday, December 21, 2012


Copied from Jon Courson's site:

Good Day Everybody!

Well, as most of you may well know, today (December 21, 2012) was the day that the Mayan Calendar said would be The End Of The World.

And the world is, understandably, scoffing and chuckling at the whole thing.

Celebrities and wanna-be's have gone on record sharing with the world how they intended to spend this  "their last day on earth" in outrageous ways of endless partying and frolicking.  Most Interesting!

For the Enemy is using this Mayan date-setting thing to do what that classic story of The Boy Who Cried Wolf teaches us about and warns us of....

...that is, in spite of The Boy's false alarms and made up lies, the Wolf indeed did come one day, and it was too late for that joking Boy to be taken seriously in his cry for help to bring about his rescue from his "tribulation."

Peter says our Enemy is like a "roaring lion seeking whom he may devour."

And his last-days strategy is to get people mocking and scoffing and joking about End-Times prophecies.

"Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, saying ,'Where is the promise of His coming ..for all things continue as they were from the beginning'" (2 Peter 3:3-4).

So, when you hear of people yukking it up and joking about "last days" prophecy, don't despair ... for in so doing they are actually fulfilling this last days prophecy, bringing His coming ever closer!!!

Jesus is truly on-the-way ... maybe today ... and wouldn't that be the Best-est Christmas Gift Ever!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

real life!

meat packing: a family affair

egg cracking lesson
(Aaron's pose means one just hit the floor)

Tessa's true feelings about eggs

look alikes?

someone dropped a chocolate on my bed...
just in time for Orion's nap!
I have just had two equal and opposite days.  The yin and the yang of days.  Yesterday was a typical day.  I woke up feeling like I hadn’t had enough sleep.  I felt achey and my back hurt before I even got out of bed.  Children also greeted me before I was even out of bed, which is never very pleasant.  I struggled to think of what to make for breakfast.  Shooing the girls upstairs to begin school took a long time.  Finding the motivation to cover all the subjects evaded me.  I took the kids to library story hour.  Aaron was disagreeable.  I got so hungry, I had to go through a drive thru to purchase lunch on the way home.  There were interruptions, accidents, screams and disputes.  Around 4 p.m. the baby went down for a nap, I finished giving Jaci her reading lesson, anticipated a much needed break, and…   the baby woke up—grumpy.  No break.  Grumpy baby=grumpy mommy.  Very, very normal.  By 5 p.m., my head was spinning with frustration.  I had accomplished some things, but only seemed to be able to focus on what wasn’t done.  I was aggravated to the bone about all the stuff that had just been dropped on the floor.  I once again imagined living by myself (just for one day) so the house would stay the same from morning ‘til evening.  At the end of my rope and the end of myself, I caved.  Unbeknownst to my kids, I seethed anger, stomped and cried.  It didn’t take long to find the root of my frustration: wrong focus.  I simply prayed, “God, I cannot control my life.  So will you please control it?!”  My husband had to be away overnight and bedtime was exhausting, but my heart was exposed and open to my Savior.  Something changed. 

All day today, I have been completely aware of God’s grace.  I woke at 5:53 with plenty of energy (everyone who knows me knows that almost never happens).  Two children got up with me, but I didn’t mind.  I got some emails written, three of us ready for the day, started laundry.  When everyone was up, I fixed the normal a la carte breakfast (all 5 of us have something different, but everyone is happy).  We went up to the school room and covered all of our subjects.  Now, typically when we breeze through the curriculum like today, I will look at the clock and it will be 2 p.m.   So that’s what I expected when I gazed, and … it was 11:53.  With no effort at all, we had finished school before lunch!  I was elated!  I knew, without a doubt, that the Lord was lifting me, carrying me, giving me joy in the journey!  I fixed a nutritious lunch.  I had free time to organize, research, check off lists.  I had time to exercise and listen to a sermon.  I fixed a hot dinner.  I took time to correct the children with a soft voice, and had time for a Christmas devotion.  I didn’t see, criticize, or mentally pine about the very same piles that were there yesterday.  It was the most picture perfect (work)day I’ve had in months.  And why?

Just because HE is GRACIOUS!!

Have you ever noticed … that God seems more interested in our heartfelt cries for help, than he is with our eloquent prayers?  Jesus warned us about public prayer, about eloquence, appearance.  I love it that such a great, omniscient, all powerful God stoops down so far to pick me up off my face, and lovingly sets my feet on a rock.  He heals my sins and re-organizes my priorities for me. 

He IS the Life!
“I am convinced God doesn’t want us to be less busy.  He wants us to take Him with us into our busyness”—Louie Giglio

Gingerbread Man decorating!

Ella was such a sweetheart when the frosting bag broke,
sending a huge blob of frosting all over hers ~
she said, "It just has more hair!"

yes, I bought a kit from Costco, because, well,
I'm a busy mama, and there were 4 of them!

Finished product!

First snowman of the season!
(complete with hot tamale lips)

Saturday, December 1, 2012

7 months

In honor of Orion's 7 month birthday today, I shall make a post!  

A spice cake to celebrate Orion's 6 month birthday
(As if 7 birthdays in this house, plus Thanksgiving and Christmas
weren't enough occasion to celebrate)
One of the great joys of turning 6 months
is that mommy FINALLY lets you begin eating
all those foods you've been grabbing
off of other people's plates for months!
Here is Orion enjoying a very garlic-y crust of bread
(Favorite foods are pears and peas,
but he has also devoured pickles and cranberry sauce without so much as a pucker)
He also laps water from a glass in a very entertaining way,
so we're all glad to give him a drink anytime!

The chomp-with-no-teeth look!

This was the day I earned the
"Bad Mommy" Award
for letting the baby fall asleep upright in his bouncer!
I always feel so sad when they fall asleep without me!

Mr Aaron.
Need I say more?
Aaron has oft seen us tape up the girls' masterpieces,
so he made one of his own...
...and taped it up himself
So nice to have a camera to remember scenes like this!

Time with Uncle Darryl!
(flashback 30 years, and that's me& my cousins sitting on his lap!)
For Tessa, November meant another missing tooth
A trip to Oregon and back with the family
EXTREME happiness over the little joys in life
EXTREME disappointment over the little bumps in life.
Yes, Tessa is our passionate girl.
Whatever she is feeling comes out in great amounts!

Ella constantly helps me with the baby.
She has such a heart of a servant; she amazes me.
Every favor and every chore, she does well.
She is a willing student, a compliant daughter,
and beautiful, besides!

And here's our Jaci bug, who often escapes the camera and the headlines due to her quiet nature.
She is a schemer
She is the ultimate button presser
Her laugh is contagious
Not one to be left behind or told she is too small,
she reads and writes to my astonishment.
What a precious little jewel!

For Adrian and I,
November meant turning 34,
2 deer in the freezer,
lots of company,
and juggling much!  

It is amazing to read about Israel in the headlines and in Bible prophecy, and know that all things are working together for good-- for the end of this earth, and the beginning of eternity.

"He who testifies to these things says, "Surely I am coming soon." Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!"  --Rev 22.20

Monday, November 12, 2012

tay tay day!

Bundled up at the OR coast in November!

Is there anything better than
1 little boy + 2 rubber boots + a whole wide beach?

We love Taylor!!

Taylor + 4 in front of Haystack Rock

Mos for lunch!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

first snow!

This morning the children saw this:
 ...and with great excitement sorted through the winter clothes bin...

and sat down at breakfast like this:
...and are now like this!
Good thing its our week off school!  :)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

5 months!

5 gems
You can imagine how difficult it is to get 5 little ones' eyes and faces all turned one direction and looking pleasant.  I had no idea this was actually a simple feat, compared to getting your 6'8" husband to look the same direction as everyone else!  ONCE AGAIN, this shot would have been a very cute picture if it weren't for your "humor", honey!  (I never know what he's doing until I see the print, 'cause I'm focusing on looking toward the camera).  Hmph.

thanks Pam for snapping these!  :)

about every other morning and every other night,
I feel compelled to take my camera outside and snap some photos
of what we are seeing.
My husband says, "you're a romantic."
I say, "I'm sooo enjoying these amazing sunrises and sunsets God is painting just for me!"
Just can't get enough!
(Can you believe this is the view from our dining room/deck?  Only it's a 180 degree view.
Yes, I do know I am the luckiest lady on earth!!)

5 months!!

The following are a series of snapshots depicting Cubby's 5 month birthday.
When you have seen enough of a couple of blue eyes and some very fat cheeks,
you may choose to quit scrolling.
I'm only posting this many because they are D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S- to me
 (that was Ella's spelling word last week, and she has taught the middle 3 children how to spell it as well, so we are hearing it a lot lately).  And I happen to know that approximately 3 aunties and 1-2 grandmas may enjoy each of them.

This little guy doubled his birth weight by 4 months.
At 5 months, he weighed in at a whopping 18 pounds ~
reaching this milestone months before his siblings,
and a whole pound heavier than Jaci was on her 1st birthday!  :)

Can you spot the baby?!

Before this blessing of a baby was born, I wondered what his nickname would be.  Seems we have one that will stick.  During his first couple of months, he reminded us of a cute little bear cub, so we started calling him "Cub".  Of course there are daily variations spoken in adoration as he becomes chubbier by the day: Chub Cub, FAT cub, Tubby Cubby, Cube, etc.  He's our little cub, so you won't be confused when I refer to him as that.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

picture this

(our big baby is really still quite small)
chub cub!

"I'm not so sure I want the kids wandering toward the bulls, with a questionable fence in between", I plead.

"Yeah, I'll keep 'em back" replies my non-chalant husband, who keeps us all balanced, if not safe.

I just walked inside from this conversation.

Two days ago....

Ahhh, back up to two days ago.  Thursday: it was the first weekday in I-can't-remember-how-long that I would have time to do something other than all the HAVE-TOs of school, cook, clean, bathe, laundry, dishes, unpack boxes, while nursing on demand and remembering to quiz the kids on their math facts.  I had settled on spending my free time mounting some pictures on these walls.  It was going to be glorious.

We were just finishing up our school day when I peered out the window and observed 2 gigantic bulls wandering around our back yard.

Upon this realization, I flew into damsel in distress mode and began dialing neighbors' numbers.  I figured they would know who the cattle belonged to, and who to call to get them rounded up.  The neighbors that are usually home were not (of course), and the one phone number I did track down... well, it was disconnected.  So I drove myself + 5 kids next door (for whom I did not have a phone number), and explained.  Within minutes, one neighbor was driving around to an adjacent property to get help, and the other neighbor sent 4 of his employees walking into my back yard to moooove the bulls on out!  So there was a rodeo of sorts in our back yard, and I was very thankful to only be a spectator!  (I did conclude that the wranglers would have been much better off on horseback).  At one point I feared that one of the young girls was going to get gored, so I did the only thing I knew to do ~ picked up the video camera ... you now, just in case I shot something that could be a youtube sensation.  Thankfully, no people or animals were harmed in the making of this story.  And not a single picture was hung, either.

"Hey Mom, look!  I have clean hands!"  Just a few minutes ago, Aaron displayed his chubby little palms and fingers for me.  He had just been playing in the dirt, so his face was covered in dust (plus some leftover lunch), his shirt had food drips and dirt on it, and his ripped jeans looked like they had just come out of the sandbox.  He had come inside, a real life Dennis the Menace, dropping crumbs of dirt as he walked.  He walked in Grandpa Aaron's cowboy boots (on the wrong feet) to the farthest bathroom from the door, pulled himself up a stepstool, and washed his hands.  He left behind all sorts of mud on the porcelain white sink.

This scene immediately reminded me of Isaiah 64.6:
"All of us have become like one who is unclean, 
and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; 
we all shrivel up like a leaf, 
and like the wind our sins sweep us away."

All my righteousness (anything I think I'm doing for God), like Aaron washing his hands, is just the same as the dusty, dirty, muddy clothes he was wearing.  My good deeds are just dirty clothes.  No, not just dirty ~ filthy.  The kind of grease, stains that oxy-clean can't remove.  We can't for a minute clean up our hands (what we do) and expect God not to notice our mud covered clothes.  He would much rather hear us admit our need for a bath ~ a plunge in the blood of Jesus ~ than to hear, "well, my hands are clean!"  What can wash away my sin?  Nothing, no nothing, but the blood of Jesus...

I adore the many ways God talks to me through experiences with my kids...

sometimes when i'm overwhelmed
and can't imagine finishing,
i pick up the camera.
this was the
"catch up on laundry + summer to winter and new sizes for the boys"
clothing project
Ella, who has an eye for true beauty, took this

this might just be the sweetest thing
I've ever stepped out of the shower to see
(and just when i snapped the photo, he smiled in his sleep)