July 21, 2010

Upcoming Travels

Hey readers! On Saturday morning we leave for Wisconsin for a week-long Family Reunion. I am so excited for this vacation. There's something so delightful about the thought of no responsibilities*, good company, and a house by a lake! I suppose it's when we think about vacation that we should reflect on the true rest that will one day be ours. (Check out Hebrew 4.) Oh, what a day THAT will be!! But for now, I'm happy to enjoy this vacation with my dad's side of the family.
However you spell it, a cheesehead makes a great gift for any Packers fan!
The first weekend of August I leave for an event called Mom Heart Leader Intensive Training, in Colorado. If you're friend on Facebook (or one of those normal kind of live-in-person friends!) you know that I'm looking forward to this event! When I first read the description I was so very excited. It is training right up the alley of what I'd like to do down the line - write and speak to instruct and encourage others, particularly out of Scripture.

Since getting accepted, I've had moments where I've been a little trepidatious. I've been plagued with doubts about my inexperience and my inadequacies. Some of this stemmed from needing to get a couple of written pieces into the organizers, and I just hadn't had the inspiration yet. The rest of it was just a result of taking my eyes off of my loving Father. Thankfully some prayer calmed me down, Colin gave me time to get away to a coffee shop to think, and inspiration came! In addition, a good friend reminded me in an email that it's a training. I'm going there to learn. I'm not supposed to know it all. Phew, thanks Jenny! I'm glad to say that I have returned to my initial excitement about the event. Really, I cannot wait to see what they have in store for the 40 or so women attending.

So that's what I'll be up to the next couple of weeks. I have a feeling it will greatly impact the frequency of my posts. But sometime in August, I'll get back into the game.

Colorado Mountain

*Okay, so I know that if you have kids there's always quite a bit to do, even on vacation, but I'm hoping to take good advantage of resting during naptimes and asking people to care for the kids now and then.

July 19, 2010


We've begun week #2 of the "summer routine". I don't know your personality, but mine needs some structure. Since having kids, I've learned that you can't have too strict of a personal schedule. But, it is helpful for me and them to have a general routine each week. Kids over 4 or so benefit from knowing that we won't go swimming today but it's on the schedule for X day. You know what I mean?

Right now our "main events" look like this:

Monday - park & library in the morning / afternoon swim
Tuesday - mommy work-out at gym in the morning, rest of the day free
Wednesday - church playgroup in the morning / Grammy is home from work
Thursday - mommy work out and trip to museum or zoo in the morning / afternoon laundry
Friday - groceries in the morning (they have the cool car carts!) / afternoon swim

As you can see, most of our time is free and all of these activities can be easily moved around if other plans arise. I also like having fun and work in the schedule, so I know there is a time when the clothes will be washed and when we will restock the refrigerator!

Here are some photos from last week's trip to the Children's Museum, because what's a post without some photos?! We missed the Curious George exhibit when it was in Boston and were delighted to see billboards announcing that it's now in Pittsburgh! It was the first stop in our visit.

(I like the juxtaposition of
the antique pump and the contemporary car.)

While there, I totally got photobombed by my Son;
must be an effect of the museum!

Do you have a summer routine or do you think that's an oxymoron? What are the highlights of your week?

July 14, 2010


Playgrounds, Picnics, & Pools

Slip 'n Slide, Sandbox, & Swings

It's tiring, but being a mom in the summer is also pretty stinkin' fun!

July 12, 2010


I just ordered prints for Elizabeth's Kindergarten album!

I wanted to do something special to commemorate the end of Elizabeth's first year of school, but was feeling at a loss. Colin reminded me of a small photo album I made for Elizabeth after she finished Joy School, a preschool program we did with some friends. So, the new tradition will be that my kids get little 80-100 photo photo albums each school year with some notes here and there about the pictures. Two really are better than one; I'm so glad Colin reminded me of that little album! I'm planning to do a family photo album each calendar year along the same lines. I posted about it on this blog once.

I'm thinking it would be fun to include a letter from both mom and dad in these albums, too. Don't you think it would be cool to be able to read through 13 years of letters from your parents when you're 30 or something, and especially after your parents are gone? I imagine you'd be able to see ways God was developing your gifts even as a child and that you'd just feel so loved. I am more sentimental than I let on, aren't I? I especially like letters; you can say whatever you please from the bottom of your heart, yet don't have to cry like a baby in front of the loved-one! :)

How are you recording your family history?

Fitting Everything In

We've been in Pittsburgh a month now. Life is slowly settling into a routine. I have not yet figured out when blogging will fit into the daily flow, but I do have thoughts, stories, and photos I'd like to post.

This weekend we took the kids on their first sightseeing trip downtown. Here we are on Mt. Washington overlooking Pittsburgh, after a ride up the incline. The Allegheny River runs down below, between Mt. Washington and the city. Hey, you really need to come visit so we can show YOU the sights, too!

July 6, 2010

Elizabeth and Susanna

We spent the weekend in Washington, DC with friends we met in Cambridge, MA several years ago. These are family friends, meaning that there are mutual friendships between the wives, husbands, and our children. We were glad to be with them!

Elizabeth and Susanna struck up their friendship at age one:

And have continued through ages two through six:
(Sadly, no photo for age 5)

The friendship circle has expanded with our little ones. Brian and Daniel get on just great at two and three-and-a-half.

And it won't be long before Thomas, almost one, joins in the boys' fun!

Here's one last photo with the whole crew!

July 1, 2010

Getting a Little More Independent

Two experiences in the last week or so that have revealed to me how my kids are growing up:

1. Brian usually begins the day with a television show, so I asked him one morning if he'd like to watch Elmo. It's a favorite and I was sure he'd say, "yeah." Instead he said, "Pooh." So I put on an episode of Tigger & Pooh and he was quite happy. He's not a baby anymore. He knows what he wants and sometimes even asks rather than whining!

2. It was pretty late one morning and I was surprised Elizabeth hadn't gotten up yet. So I went up to check on her. The door was closed, but the light was on. I didn't disturb her and imagined she was getting dressed. (She's been pretty excited for VBS and gotten dressed upon waking most days.)

A good while passed and she still hadn't come down stairs. So, I took a peek into her room. She was sitting up in bed, fully dressed for the day, reading a book to herself - making up a story to go with the pictures. And she didn't hear me open the door, because the fan was on, so I was able to admire her "grown-up-ness" for a little while. I was so excited for her and touched by this moment of independence she was enjoying.