Saturday, August 31, 2013

Good-bye Summer!!!

Unfortunately, we HAVE to say good-bye to SUMMER!

This summer I had a great time with the kids!

** Elizabeth got lots of therapy and had surgery.

** The boys worked on the farm, each went on a ministry trip and to Lake Ann Camp.

** The girls read books (mommy read LOTS), played games and helped me do LOTS!

**We all cuddled -- went to the beach SOME and made MANY trips to GR for doctor appointments.

** We caught up on all the normal appointments -- like everyone to the dentist, eye doctor, hair cuts, etc.

**We went to the movies.

** We did some projects around the house (more on those in this blog post)

** We had fun shopping and going to art fairs.

** We had a WONDERFUL family vacation.

But now -- we have to get back to school!

SO -- we decided to do one more picnic and enjoy one more afternoon around our beautiful state!

We went up to Ludington and had a very nice picnic.

We enjoyed the sun -- even though it was WINDY!

My Darling loves to take pictures -- Me and my sweetie!

The three girls waiting for daddy and MD to come back from the van so we can walk the pier.  This is Elizabeth's first time really walking with her leg -- she is a bit sore still.

 Loving this day -- he is so cute!  Of course he had to have is ipod -- NOT!

So handsome!

I LOVE this man!  We were thrilled he had the day off so we could enjoy this time as a family!

The girls loving playing in the sand!

We walked out to the Lighthouse.

I LOVE how MD is so loved my his little sisters.  BaJabs and MD have a special bond.

 JM acting out his version of American Ninja on the lighthouse. HAHA

 The beautiful lighthouse -- this pier is 1/2 mile long.

Our gorgeous children!

The walk proved too much for Elizabeth so MD carried her the remainder of the way to the van.  She is kissing him on the cheek in this picture. Awwww....

We had a MARVELOUS ride -- just enjoying and viewing God's beautiful world!


Ended the day with ice cream!

We can now say ---

Bring on the routine, schedules, homework, and early mornings!!


Really -- I have to praise GOD because I am blessed to have 9 weeks to spend immersed with my children at home. 
 Yes, I KNOW God has called me to teach for this time BUT I am so thankful to have these summer months to JUST be a mom ;) 
 I LOVE IT!!!  

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Fair time -- showmanship

FAIR 2013

Both boys are showing a HOG!!!

MD with Piggy-O


JM with Gip the pig

Both of the pigs made weight when they entered on Tuesday!!!!  That is always exciting!  MD's pig weighed 256 and JM's pig weighed 283.

Today was the competition -- Showmanship and Market.

Both boys did GREAT!  

MD got 1st in Showmanship in his age group (there were 15 in his age group.)  But his pig did not place in the top 5 in the market weight class. 

 MD chatting with another competitor in between heats.

MD in the show ring working his pig at the perfect distance from the judge. 

JM did not place in the top 5 in Showmanship (there were 15 in his age group)  BUT he made some awesome improvements in his style to show.  He did not use his body, he remembered to smile and he used his cane less.  His pig did not place in the top 5 in the market mid-heavy weight class.  

 JM showing his pig with all of the other competitors in the arena.

JM talking to the judge -- the judge goes around and asks EVERY competitor a question. 

The girls come along to CHEER on the boys.  MD's girlfriend joined us this year.

It was very hot but they toughed it out!  We packed a little picnic to enjoy.

 They get all 'farm' dressed-up!!!  This year My Darling picked out the fabric for the skirts.  We used the LARGE square charm packs to make these.  LOVE them -- I also added some ruffles to the shirts.  They turned out cute.

Our 3 girls and Lauren's daughter, R.

R. enjoying a wheelchair ride with Elizabeth and my friend Pam.

Tomorrow night is the auction.   We are praying that they boys get a good placement in the auction and that the business where the boys talked to, come and buy HIGH :)

Many may not know about the 4-H animal projects.  BUT this is an awesome program where kids learn about animals and how to care and raise them.  They also work on how to show-off their animals and present the animal and themselves, well.  They also have an auction where many businesses attend and purchase the animals in support of the kids.  The kids have gone around and explained to the businesses what they are doing and how they are raising their animal.  

Saturday, August 17, 2013


This is a WONDERFUL, Worshipful, FUN time when MANY headline Christian singers/groups come to our area.

The boys really wanted to go -- last year we went one day.  BUT this year I remembered to order the tickets in December and get them at the CHEAP price -- $10 per day per person.  WOW!!!

We were able to go 3 of the 4 days -- yes, I was able to sell our 4 tickets the day we could not go.

The girls did get to go one night.  BUT the music is loud and there are LOTS of people.  The girls, especially Elizabeth, get a tad overwhelmed.

NOT the boys!!!  They LOVE to be right up front!

This year JM LOVED Matthew West.  He put on an AWESOME concert.  And His life verse is the same as JM's.  SO -- JM really wanted to wait in line and meet Matthew West AND get his autograph.  Matt and I let him -- but it was a long wait.


We kept checking on him --
FINALLY, when Matt went to check, JM just got up to the table.  They were very kind and let Matt go right up and take pictures and meet him as well.

This totally made JM's night -- week -- month :)

We finished off the night with a concert by Jeremy Camp.  WOW -- awesome!

I enjoyed the concert from the back -- as I do not like to be so crowded with people.


The guys enjoyed the concert RIGHT UP THERE!!!

Again, wow -- what an awesome time.  This festival is reasonably priced -- both getting in AND the food that is available.  We are so thankful we are able to enjoy this opportunity!  I am also very thankful that my children LOVE music -- and especially music that brings praise to Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013


Elizabeth had surgery today.

She had some screws and a plate in her stub leg.  They were inserted when they did the amputation last year because one of the bones was growing faster.  Today, they took them OUT!

YES, they gave us what was in her leg.  Elizabeth WANTED it!!!  The screws are hollow.  We are making a bracelet out of it.

The unfortunate part was that her 'normal' leg has a bone that is growing too quick.  
They had to put a few screws and plate in her LONG leg.  They actually look EXACTLY like the ones that came out of her 'stub' leg.   

This surgery is pretty routine BUT it is painful afterward.

She did pretty good -- there was LOTS of pain after but thankfully we got it under control.

In recovery room -- lots of pain here.

We did get admitted for a bit --  A SHORT bit!!!

Admitted -- up in her room.  EATING!  

We were discharged later in the evening because she was doing well.

They sent us home with a prescription for some pain meds --


We could not get filled by ANYONE!!!  It was late and there was no one open in a 60 mile radius that had this med.  Yes, it is no longer going to be available and the Dr. put the wrong strength on the script .  Thankfully, when I got home and dug through the cupboard -- I FOUND some left over from BaJabs' surgery in February.  Which is unlike me -- I throw away as soon as we are done, usually!!!

Elizabeth was excited to go home and the trip home started off fine.

When we first got in the car -- SMILES -- 5 minutes later -- LOTS of tears!!!


Unfortunately, she struggles with car sickness and it really HIT!

 AND a meltdown started!

Which made a long ride ;)

Mommy got in the back seat and held her the hour ride home.

She is handling the whole situation well.  The pain control is going ok.  She is a trooper!  THANK-YOU for all of the prayers!
We are thankful for ONE straight leg with the hope of the second one straightening SOON!


Elizabeth has made good progress.  She does NOT like the meds as it makes her sick.  The wounds are BOTH healing well.  AND she is finally putting some weight on BOTH legs.  She is in her new bed NOT with us!!!  We go to the Dr. and Prosthetic office on Friday.

Picture taken 1 week after surgery!  NO, she did not swim!!  Her incisions canNOT be submerged.  BUT she totally makes the best of it and has figured out how to get her head wet and NOT her mid-legs.  

Tuesday, August 13, 2013


Family Time!

A special time!

My sister and her family came to visit for a week or so.  
We were so blessed to be able to spend a few of the days with them.  
2 of the times we were ALL able to be together.  

Picnic Time!

We decided it would be fun to float down the Stony Lake Channel.  This is something I have not done since middle school.  BUT we all had special memories and really thought it would be great to take the kids and do this together.  

 The group at the push off!

MD and his girlfriend.

We all had fun!!! 

 The girls waiting for us at the end.  

MD and S.

Dinner -- ALL of us around the family table.


AND of course a bonfire with s'mores.

We also had a dinner for my moms birthday.

Again, a afternoon of just being together,



My mom with her 6 grandchildren.

and gifts.

My sister, brother and me.  We are not sitting in birth order ;)

Finally, we needed to have a beach day.  Unfortunately, it was windy and chilly!


We braved it!  We wore swimsuits with sweatshirts!
We still had a picnic -- 

The 4 girls!

They ran around playing in the sand in tall grass.

yes, the girls still had to try out the water


I loved that the girls were full of imagination and created fun!

They actually created a sand birthday cake.  A bucket blew onto the beach and completely on their own -- with many do overs were able to make this!

The girls finished off their time together --- crafting!

All and all it was wonderful to visit and reconnect.  The girls have fun and get along wonderfully.  But being able to chat and have my sister near was just the best.