Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Baby girl 10 months:

  • Has four new teeth on top (total of 6) 
  • Likes to inch around the room 
  • Can balance for a few seconds unassisted
  • Is attached to the thin blankets we put her to sleep with
  • Learned to wave and do her first sign, "all done"
  • Is still totally cute and full of personality
  • Does not let other babies bully her 

Tuesday, August 16, 2016


Malachi 3:10
"Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it." (KJV)

"Room enough to receive." This verse pretty much sums up the past ten months since baby number six arrived. (I actually took these pictures a month ago but haven't had time to edit them or post until now!) This past year I have felt an abundance of blessings from God, but also an abundance of responsibilities, and my cup just wasn't quite big enough to hold them all. I was constantly feeling like my head was barely above water and at any moment I would just drown. A perfect gift would have been a clone of myself so there was more of me to go around. A gentleman said it beautifully in church yesterday when he told the audience that he was "blessed and stressed by five children." And those were all adult children! For me, having children #1-3, i.e. the crazies, felt like a small family. Having #4 and #5 felt like a medium sized family. Somehow with having #6 we crossed the magical border into Large Family Land where all your food is bought in bulk and you buy red flames to put on the side of your new airport shuttle bus. I feel a kinship with other mothers of large families that I did not feel with five. Before I had children I would have told you it was a silly notion to think that you could have too many blessings. Now I am older and hopefully wiser, and understand a little better that the greatest blessings in life come with obligations of time, talents, and self. The Lord has so many blessings that He wants to give us, but only as we have room enough to receive them. Just lately I have begun to feel like I am beginning to swim again. I can handle life without flipping out or spilling over-too much. I can freeze corn and can summer peaches without the house burning down or the children falling apart. I am the third picture in the series at present.  The new blessings have slowed to a manageable trickle. If nothing else, I have gained a more eternal perspective on my life and the nature of blessings, and THAT is a blessing for which I'm truly grateful.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

School Awards

Mac as a kindergartner just excelled at school the whole year (except maybe in handwriting) and will be starting 2nd grade math in the fall. He is also a stellar reader for his age and just overall extremely bright. I can't claim any of this as a parent. He was the easiest of the three boys to teach to read - took about a month last summer.- and just needs very little help from my part.  David received 2 classroom awards for Science and Geography, but those aren't even really his favorite subjects, just one's that he happened to get the highest grade in. Gabe is the real story though. He struggled mightily this year, first with behavioral problems (they have a rule for everything at Ridgeview) and then once that was under control, with his grades. But he persevered and steadily improved. In fact, he won most improved for his whole grade, one of 4 special awards given for each grade level. Zach was the one who got to watch him receive the award and teared up, knowing how hard he (and we) had worked this year. We are so proud of you boys! 

Gabe also won aspiring author for his classroom

Friday, July 29, 2016

The Sacred Grove

16.... I saw a pillar of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually until it fell upon me.
 17 It no sooner appeared than I found myself delivered from the enemy which held me bound. When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other—
This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!

We visited the the home of Joseph Smith and the sacred grove on our way back across the country. Although it was hard for our young family to stay reverent in the woods, it was still a beautiful walk that hopefully they will remember.

Monday, July 18, 2016

My Maine Squeezes

Lovely but Chilly. This crazy 8 enjoyed the Maine coast but mostly from the shore line. Zach and Ruth did a fair amount of body surfing together in the waves, which was adorable, as did Gabriel, but the rest of us were satisfied with a quick dip in the ocean and then back out again. Becky, Stevie, Kayla, Jenny and Mason brightened  up our trip as we enjoyed each other's company out on the sand. Lincoln took a quick snuggle-snooze on Jen's lap and everyone enjoyed some sandy snacks. A successful family field trip.

Its how we take a proper selfie

old boat picture #1

old boat picture #2

old boat picture #3

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Niagra Falls with my loves


This was our speed-pit stop at Niagra falls. It was 20 miles out of the way on our trek to Massachussets on a day that we were already driving 10 hours. We had to make it a quickie. It has been over 20 years since I've seen the falls and about the same for Zach (how am I that old!?) but a first time for our little family. This is Lincoln saying, "I see a boat!" and "Waterfall, Waterfall!" Niagra is a spectacular site so I'm glad we stopped. 

Thursday, July 7, 2016


This has been a visiting summer, starting with a visit from Grandma and Grandpa Barry and cousin Owen. What a fun way to start the vacation. 

Owen fits right in!