Birthday Boy


My little guy has turned 1. 
Here are a few pictures of our various celebrations.

He enjoyed a whipped cream cupcake.

The uncertain look. "Is this is for me?"

Yes, it's for me!

Happy birthday to me!

Grandma and Grandpa R came over to celebrate. 

Opening gifts was a highlight for Big Sis, who was more into the unwrapping and playing with new toys than the birthday boy himself.

We celebrated with my mom when she visited a week or so ago. 

So here was little man with his packages, ready to open.

And playing with new toys after opening.

So much fun turning one!

Baby Boy Turns One


My littlest son has turned one! 

Someone once said of this baby stage: 
The days are long but the years are short. 

This is one of my favorite pictures of little man's pout!

We sure love you, Mr. Man! 

I thank you, God, for this little boy's life. 
I thank you, God, for entrusting him to our family for this time. What a privilege to raise Him up for your glory... to pray for him, to teach him about You, to teach him to sing Your praises. 

"Every good and perfect gift from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights." 
We praise you, God, for the good gift of life!

Marriage Retreat


 Last weekend my husband and I were privileged to be able to attend a marriage retreat hosted by our church. 
What a blessing this time was!

The retreat was held at a retreat center in Kewanna, Indiana. There was plenty of room for our 14 couples to have private rooms and plenty of space. Meals were enjoyed together in the large kitchen and dining room. Conference sessions were held in a large open room in the basement, perfect for larger group activities.

The setting was so idyllic. A beautiful secluded lake. Gorgeous summer weather. No bugs. 

The dock and the lake reminded us of our roots - we met at a Christian camp that was set on a similarly-sized lake. 

Both my hubby and I enjoyed some precious relaxation!

Thank you to all who participated and who put this on. Marriage is worth celebrating and supporting!

Grandma K visit


My mom (aka Grandma K) visited last weekend. 
We enjoyed having her around! 

We visited a local park together. 

Such a neat park and the weather was gorgeous for our outing. 

Grandma was a good sport to try some of the playground equipment! :-)

We also visited the nearby zoo. 
She hadn't been to a zoo in decades so it was time! We were able to see the usual zoo animals, plus the ostriches put on quite a crazy dance show for us. We also saw the banded mongoose feeding time, which involved brown paper bag lunches of live insects. Very memorable! 

My youngest enjoyed doing hair and fussing with rings and such. 

Grandma K and my oldest daughter played a number of games together. 

We also celebrated her birthday while she was here, eating out at Texas Roadhouse. The employees wished her a hardy "Yee haw" and made her hold their toy pony-on-a-stick. 

Happy birthday again, Mom! And thank you for making the long trip to spend some time with us. We love you!

My Full Heart


My heart is so full. I have 4 beautiful children to raise here on earth and 3 more I look forward to meeting in heaven. The Lord has been good to me and I thank Him daily for the chance to live this life with these wonderful people! 

Here are a few group pictures we've been able to snap in recent weeks of all 4 kids. 

I am loving them at their various ages and stages!

Home Improvement: Cabinets and Contact Paper


I am embarrassed to admit that we've lived in our home for over 7 years and I've never tried this super simple way to "improve" our nasty kitchen cabinets. 

Contact paper! Ever used it? What a simple and inexpensive way to change the look of your old cabinets. Just like a fresh coat of paint, it can change the look completely!

I bought 4 rolls of contact paper. Those 4 rolls covered the cabinets in these pictures (with bottom and upper shelves), as well as an upper cabinet with 3 shelves and one small drawer.

There are many colors and patterns to choose from. I chose a simple light color that matched our kitchen flooring. Even though the inside of the cabinets is not something visitors to our home would ever see, I see them every day. So this home improvement was simply to freshen up my work-space not to impress anyone else!

For someone who is not at all crafty, I am very pleased with how this turned out and proud of the fact that I did it all by myself! 

PS: I have to share this picture of my "helpers" enjoying the empty cabinets.

Girly Girl


This little girl. She's 2, almost 3, years old. 
She's in the "I love dresses" phase of life right now. 

Every single day demands a new dress. It matters not whether we have plans to leave the house. A dress is simply a must! 

This adorable dress was a homemade hand-me-down from some friends. With the adorable matching purse... so precious!

 I don't mind this at all. My older daughter never went through such a phase, so I'm loving this! 

This one loves to have her done, in a "pony" every day. 

She loves to wear bracelets and necklaces. 
In this picture, she's got a pretty hair tie as a bracelet.

Love you, my fashionista girly-girl princess!