13 December, 2014

Family Pictures

Our family pictures this year are some of my favorites.
Thanks to Sadie, owner of Manifold Grace Photography, for capturing our personalities, quirks, and smiles! 
Olivia did not want to smile at all, and Sadie was so patient and worked to get amazing family shots.
She let the girls play and be silly, and had the quickness to capture those brief moments that all three girls would cooperate at the same time! 

Please note, that I have added new photos of the girls off to the side --->
that are their actual smiles. :) 

I can not recommend Sadie highly enough!

Many blessings to your family, as well!

30 October, 2014

Prairie Days!

 As part of our fall festivities with our local community, we attended an event called Prairie Days at a local conservation center.

My mom and siblings came for a parade that morning, and after lunch we all went to Prairie Days.

Several tried a Civil War-era saddle:

 Olivia was the only one of my girls who would actually get on the saddle, and then she quickly changed her mind. :) 

Examining copies of money, and different guns and pistols.

I got to shoot caps from one of the guns. This gun was a hybrid, used by the cavalry.

A prairie wagon, and tent. 
Ava could relate, as she is a huge fan of Laura Ingalls Wilder. It certainly made parts of history understandable!

Sawing logs (in a non-sleeping way):

Grinding corn:

There were llamas! And a demo of how their wool was spun and woven. All very cool. 

Then the wildlife center, where we explored and learned:

We ended our time by watching the apple press, sampling fresh cider, and watching a candle making demo.

It was a time enjoyed by all!

10 October, 2014


 You all know how much I love celebrating birthdays. 
(If you don't know, I LOVE celebrating birthdays!)

My oldest child had a birthday recently. 
She turned 5. 
(How did she get so old?!)

Her birthday was on Sunday this year, so we planned some special treats before church:

Her requested vanilla cake with chocolate frosting:

Cake for breakfast is the BEST.

After church (where the very thrilled birthday girl received many happy birthday wishes), we surprised her with a trip to the zoo.
Our friends joined us, much to Ava's delight.

Included was a trip on the train. Not a huge train, but the first ride ever for the girls, and Ava got to blow the whistle since it was her birthday. That made her day!!!

It was a very special day! 
We finished up at Wendy's (nothing too fancy, but time commitments back in town didn't allow for an extended meal). 
A couple days later, we went to Pizza Ranch with my side of the family and celebrated a few family birthdays that evening.
The following weekend, we were visiting Mr. Wonderful's family, and had another special birthday celebration with them.
Each celebration was special for Ava, and she felt very loved and enjoyed. :) 

Ava is in Kindergarten, and learning reading, writing, math, spelling, science, history, and all about her world. She loves school, and always begs to do her workbooks!

She prays well, and I know she prays with a clear faith-it is remarkable to see her prayers answered so evidently. One example is that on nights she prays for good dreams, she has them. This is a huge answer for a girl who struggles with scary dreams.

As Ava continues her fifth year, our prayer for her is that she continues to grow in the grace and knowledge of her Lord Jesus Christ. She has professed faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and we see her growing in Him. Every day she makes choices to honor God, to respect her parents, to put others first, to be a helper, to use kind words, and to encourage her sisters. This is an enormous blessing and encouragement!

Ava....I love you forever.