Archive | September, 2011

Last Swim of the Year

30 Sep

I heard a big splash while I was standing in the kitchen so I headed down to the lake and found Jared in the lake and the kids grinning from ear to ear.


These girls sure look like sisters.  Love them.

Move # 2, Take A Look!

28 Sep

We have moved out of our previous house and are now in a huge four bedroom house on Lake Vermillion.

It has been a tiring and exhausting few days of packing and unpacking, moving and hauling, not sleeping, wrestling children and cleaning.  But it has definitely been worth all the work.  For eight glorious months we get to stay in this house that is rented out to vacationers during the summer months and now rented to us until next May.  Here are a few pictures for you to see:

Not many people get to wake up to a view like this one:

Aleah and Sophi’s favorite part about our new spot:

There are many great things about this house, mainly- We don’t have to eat in the living room, you will not have to sleep on the couch if you come to visit and you will even have your own bathroom.  I will have my own bathroom when you are visiting.  And you will have a GORGEOUS view of one of the most beautiful lakes in Minnesota.

We are so happy and blessed to be able to live in this remarkable place for eight months.  In the spring we will have to move out of this house because it is rented during the summer to rich people with gobbs of money.  We will then move into the parsonage.  Until then, we will be soaking up every minute.

Thinking Ahead

26 Sep

I have made it eight months of making all my girls clothes.

And now I must be thinking ahead since I will be making two Halloween Costumes.  These are my thoughts thus far:

Ideas for Aleah:

Ideas for Sophi:

Our whole family could dress up like the incredibles!

Any other good ideas out there?  I am definitely open to your brilliant thoughts!


20 Sep

A few nights ago I had just put Sophi to bed and was about to put Aleah to bed and looked into the kitchen.  It was a bit of a disaster from dinner and probably some mess from breakfast and lunch too.  I asked Aleah, “Do you want to go to bed or would you rather help me with the kitchen?”  To my surprise she said that she wanted to help.

I pulled up a chair next to the sink for her to stand on and filled the sink with soapy water.  And she got to work and loved it.  She sang songs and splashed as I swept and filled the dishwasher.  I remember my mom doing this when i was little and also loving it.

She lined up all the cups in a perfect line.

Aleah looked so proud as she used the scrub wand to clean the insides of the dirty dishes

I feel like she is the kind of kid who is paying attention to every detail.  She picked up that scrub brush like she has been washing dishes forever but in reality is was the first time.

I remember when I was little always wanting to do big kid stuff, or even the super fun stuff that grown ups got to do.  Somehow their life of staying up late and doing adult stuff seemed way cooler than all the playing I was doing.

And now Aleah is the same way, wanting to do grown up stuff like the dishes.  Have you ever noticed how the way kids play is what they see other adults doing?  I am noticing this more and more as she gets older.  Just the other day she was asking me for my order and talking on her pretend cell phone.  The things I hear her say on her “cell phone” crack me up big time.  Yesterday she was taking a very important phone call and commented on how she had seen her friends picture on facebook and how absolutely cute the picture was.  Holy Smokes.

Anyways, she helped me clean the kitchen and I was very grateful.  We got to spend some one on one time and when I put her to bed I didn’t have to tackle the kitchen by my lonesome.

What a great helper.

Nature Letters

17 Sep

I want to try and find all five letters in my last name somewhere outside.

I’ve seen this done a few times but I want to take my own pictures, so it will be more special.

Here is what I have so far:

As you can see I have a ways to go but its pretty fun to have something to be watching for when I am outside.

Cold Morning

15 Sep

This morning, thanks to Aleah, I woke up at 6 am.  I located her pluggies (pacifiers) that had been lost during the night in her blankets and then left her to play in her room until we start making a family breakfast at 7am.  As I walked out of her room contemplating whether or not I should try and fall back asleep, I looked out the window and this is what I saw:

What a beautiful way to start my day.  Yes, it wasn’t that pleasant knowing how freezing it was outside but I couldn’t deny how beautiful the grass looked, painted with sparkly white powder.

This picture shows how unprepared we were for this cold stint.  Less than a week ago we were all in the lake and now the kiddy pool is covered in a thin, crisp layer of frost.

my beautiful family spying on me from the warmth of the cozy house

Yesterday it snowed, big, wet flakes and this morning we awoke to glittering frost.  Stay bundled up out there, but hey- it’s not even fall for at least another week!

Summer’s Sweet Goodbye

12 Sep

As Caitlyn wrote about in our previous post, we spent this last weekend at our friends place in Northern Minnesota, taking care of their kids while they spent some time away for their anniversary.  As far as babysitting gigs go, this was about as good as it gets:  Log home tucked deep in the woods, hundreds of feet of lakeshore, a beautiful sunny weekend, and kids that not only wanted to fish with me, but were pretty darn good at it as well.  And lucky for us, Caitlyn kept her camera handy most of the weekend so we were able to capture some pretty priceless memories from our fun “babysitting” retreat in far northern Minnesota.

The day was pretty remarkable from the start.  The lakeshore faces east, so the sun fills the morning with brightness and warmth, and our friend’s property holds this sort of casual, unpretentious elegance that makes it profoundly relaxing and serene, even with a half dozen kids buzzing around.  It’s as if this land knows it’s own beauty and is satisfied with itself, full of wisdom and age.

I fished in the morning and brought four of the six kids out on the boat with me.  The two oldest were pretty self-sufficient in the boat, each landing nice-sized perch and crappie without any help from me.  The only time I had to assist with landing a fish was when the six-year-old boy hooked into a nice northern pike and needed me to grab it out of the water (yah…I left the net on shore).  The two younger ones on the boat, one of whom was Aleah, mostly entertained each other by making up stories about the plastic twister-tails we were using as bait – “This is my pet wormy, don’t worry, it won’t bite” —  and they’d occasionally help drop a fish into the basket as we collected our “keepers” for that evening’s dinner.

We came in with 13 nice perch, 10 nice crappies, and one decent pike; enough fish to feed our small army. 

I spent the afternoon cleaning fish, while the rest of the youngsters alternated between swimming and stealing fish off the cleaning table and making them kiss me in the back.  We had a good time.

The sun burned brightly all day and we splashed and laughed until it was time to heat the oil for our fish fry.  In many ways, this was our farewell to summer.  The weather up here for the next week will struggle to get out of the fifties, and in no time the leaves will burst with color, sweatshirts will replace swimsuits, and kitchens will fill with the smells of apple crisps and butternut squash.  But we had a beautiful summer, and this last weekend the sunny season offered us a sweet kiss goodbye with wonderful friends in a marvelous place.

A Busy Weekend

10 Sep

I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m sorry.
I know it has been a few too many days since my last post but I have a great excuse!

Our newfound great friends had their 15th wedding anniversary today.  Since they have five kids they don’t get much alone time with one another.  We offered to take the kids for a bit so they could get away and they took us up on the offer.  Their youngest child is not yet sleeping through the night so they took her with them.  That left Jared and I with their other four and our two kids from Friday afternoon after school until about 6pm today.

Their kids are so full of life and are a joy to be around.  We had a great weekend and I will definitely add more about it in the next day or two.  I have some incredible pictures to share with you.

Until then, thank you for your patience with me and the blog, you all mean so much to me!

Flower Girl Friend

6 Sep

This is a post I never published this summer and since I don’t have another one ready at the moment here we g0 =)

At the wedding Aleah played with the precious flower girl, Sadie.  They were so adorable together- feeding one another cheerios, picking flowers and twirling to the wedding music.

beautiful wild flowers

feeding one another snacks

May they live happily ever after.

A Wedding Weekend

3 Sep

We went to a wedding yesterday and I think it might be one of the last weddings of our good college friends.  There are a few others but the days of going to a wedding every weekend of the summer are over.

I have made it eight months without buying the girls any clothes.  Whew.  This has been a fun and rewarding challenge for myself but it has also been very inconvenient at times.  Aleah did not have a nice enough dress that fit her for the wedding so I had to make her one.

No one has been sleeping that well around our house for the past week because Aleah got a really bad cough from some neighbor kids.  The kind where you wake up at night because you are coughing.  And if she is waking up then either Jared or I are waking up as well.  Fortunately Sophi has not gotten the cough and I didn’t have to make Sophi’s dress.

Needless to say sewing a dress was not on the top of my priority list but I scrambled a bit and this is what I came up with.

I used an old bridesmaid dress, took in the sides and added adjustable straps as well as trimmed the bottom.

Happy Labor Day Weekend!