Monday, September 29, 2014

It's Monday all over again.

It's Monday all over again, and the weekend went by in a flash. Saturday morning started bright and early, with all of us out of the house by 7:15am for soccer pictures and a game.

Last week was a bit of an easy win. This week was a whole different game. These kids played hard and non-stop, and lost 3-2. It was a fun game to watch and to cheer for.

Every year in September, Bryan's parents host a "Back to School" party, and invite friends and neighbors and family. There are a bunch of teachers and students in the mix, so it's a great reason to celebrate! Everybody brings some food to share, there is swimming and volleyball and lotsa kids playing. It's a great time.

This year was no exception, well except this year came with an additional fun factor...

...a gigantic water slide. And it was a huge hit with kids of all ages!

At some point, the grown men decided that pool toys would also make fun water slide toys. And they ran off and raided the pool.

This might be as graceful as a grown man riding a lizard can look...

This guy riding an airplane... not so graceful...

Eventually the real kids were able to use the toys as well. 

No, I did not venture onto the slide.

In between the water slide and swimming, there was a volleyball game.

Here he is, the man of my dreams...

It was a wonderful evening, and we all had such a great time. 

Yesterday we spent a lazy day around the house. Grady was up off and on all throughout the night with an earache, so we didn't go to church. In fact we didn't leave the house. We exercised in our pajamas, and played quietly all day. By the end of the day, Grady's ear was feeling better, for which I was relieved. It wasn't how I had planned to spend the day, and of course I would never hope for one of my children to be sick, but I ended up being very thankful for the time of purposeful slow down with them.

And now it's Monday, and we start this crazy circuit all over again. All the while, we're looking to see the best of what we have, right here and now, in the midst of the crazy. Have a great week friends!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

A New Day

Grady is #5 this season, and returning to Team Crew.
This past March, in our search to find something physical that Grady would both enjoy and be good at, we signed him up for soccer. He had a pretty rough start, but ended on a positive note, with lessons learned for all of us.

This month, the fall soccer season started up, and I wondered how it would go for Grady. Would he start back where he was at the beginning of last season, shy and unsure? Would he remember his friends? Would he still have friends on his team? Or would he jump right back into to it, and pick up where he left off at the end of last season?

Grady was so excited for his first game this past Saturday, which I thought was a good sign. Friday afternoon, the day before the game, the rain started, and didn't stop. All night it rained, and into the morning. And as we got up and rushed to get out by 8am, I kept waiting to hear that his first game would be cancelled due to rain, but that notice never came.

Since there was no lightening, it was GAME ON!

And little buddy was all over it! 

And guess who scored his first ever goal?! AND his second and third!
That's right! My boy! Whoo hoo!!

He was so excited.

 His team won the game, 9-0... It may or may not have been a very equal match up...

Never the less, these crazy kids played their best, and had a great time. And the mamas and daddies had so much fun standing there in the rain screaming and cheering. Indeed it was new growth, and a new day.

Friday, September 19, 2014

A Sunset Ride...

Happy Friday, friends!!

This morning I thought I'd post some pictures from our sunset ride a few days ago. It was a beautiful evening, warm and breezy, and so full of color. We stopped to run around a little in the field, and stretch our legs. It was a very sweet family time together.

Many of you have been asking if there are any updates on the adoption front, and are wondering what's new. The answer to that is "no, and nothing". Really. It's only been two and a half weeks, but it sure feels like longer. It was kinda the the hospital term "hurry up and wait". We hurried, and now we're waiting. We are waiting for word that we've been matched. And we're still praying, of course. Feel free to pray with us. We would love a speedy quick matching and placement, but more than that, we want God's timing, as it will always be better than ours.

Until next time, enjoy the sunrise!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Lilly's 4th Birthday Party: Lilly, You’re a Hoot!

Last Saturday, we celebrated the fourth birthday of my sweet youngest, Lilly. Months before her actual birthday, she requested an "owl party", and every time I asked her what theme she would like, she was insistent on owls. At one point, she found an Oriental Trading magazine of mine, and went through it circling the owl themed items that she would like at the party. (They included owl "lillipops" and a huge personalized banner with her picture in it. Those items did not make it to the party!)

These guys did make it to the party, however. The cutest owl cupcakes ever! 

Here we are, pre-party family picture.

We chose Gemini Springs Park in Debary, Fl. It is a gorgeous scene of mossy trees, the spring right beside the pavilion, and lots of space for kiddos to run free. The weather report for that day was rain off and on. We hoped for off...

For party favors, we made owl ski hats for each of the kids. They donned their owl hats, and then went on a scavenger hunt for owlish/naturey things. There were items like; rats, mice, frogs, snakes, lizards, spiders, cockroaches, ants, moss, feathers, sticks, etc... on the list. (Of course the vast majority of those were planted plastic critters.)

Bryan gave the hunt instructions, and off they went.

I completely love the picture below. I love that so many of the adults are up and participating with the kids, and watching them run from tree to tree, shrieking as they go.

The men of the grill...

(The picture below on the left is of Lilly telling Mr. Jody that the real frog that she had caught, while small enough to eat, should not be eaten. And then reassuring him, that "we do NOT eat frogs"... as if that was ever in question...)

 Our friend Robby brought his remote controlled car, which really, may have been the most fun of all! Note to friends with remote controlled cars: this is a huge party hit, and these entertainment services could be rented out! 

Below, on the right is my wonderful friend Dawn, who grabbed my camera and took probably 75% of these pictures. THANK YOU SO MUCH Dawn for capturing so many beautiful moments from our evening!

Towards the end of the night, the skies grew dark, and the winds picked up, and we knew that rain was a comin! We were right in the middle of opening gifts, when we decided to pack them up, and open the rest at home. And then sure enough, it started to pour, good 'ole Florida down pour style. Bryan and a bunch of the guys started packing up the truck, and we hurried to sing "Happy Birthday" and pass out dessert.

As you can see, Lilly was unhampered by the rain in the eating of her cupcake.

We cleaned up and loaded up, and then we were off. Sweaty and sticky, and dripping with rain, but so thankful for a beautiful evening with our friends!

To our family and friends:

You have blessed our lives in so many ways over the years, and we are so thankful for your friendship. Sometimes life is hard, and the struggles are real, and it's a blessing to have Christian brothers and sisters to walk through life with.

Thank you for celebrating our daughter with us, and for being a part of our family.