Knowing

The warm breeze blows
Blonde hair from the little girl beside me tickles my cheek
Bare toes wiggle, glad for the freedom
I think of the first time I ever saw those toes
And how I counted them over and over again

Contented quietness surrounds us
Due in part to the eagerness to consume sweet, milky goodness
Ice cream kisses are given at intervals from the one who can't sit still
Dancing to the tune of the neighbor's guitar
As if this moment had a sound track

Knobbly knees stick out, covered in dirt
(When did all the baby fat disappear?!)
Legs bent in that perfect cross legged way
Her shoulder is pressed against mine
In the most familiar and trusting of gestures

My other inheritance watches intently
Sparkling eyes peeking out over the top of her sunny day treat
Following, internalizing, absorbing
Learning the rhythm and rhyme of relationship
Waiting until it can be tested in her own unique style

Bits of chocolate drop to the deck floor
Only to be snapped up and enjoyed
Five second rules don't exist yet
Because there is nothing to fear
No reason for worry

Cones are tapped together
An exuberant 'Cheers!'
Repeated over and over again
Such is the overflow of the happiness that fills them
Easily found and quickly displayed

Giggles break out when a reflection is spotted
Sticky faces laugh at the sight they find in the basement window
There is joy in what they see
Full acceptance of all that they are
Golden curls and blue-eyed shine

A spider appears
Curiousity rises as heads are dipped down low, searching
In the background, anxiety is kept in check
Ever guarding
Protecting from the incongruency of adulthood

But sit and watch and see
In this peaceful, treasured oasis
All these things are tucked away in a mother's heart
The way they were meant to be
Sacred and secure

Every thing that has been left undone
All the wondering of how it will all work out
Each concern of all that I lack
And the ways that I fail
Disappear

In these slow and precious moments
My life is perfect
And my heart is full
This is my adventure
This is my joy
Knowing
I'm exacly where I'm supposed to be

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This Perfect Day

Today was a great day. No, wait...it was a glorious day! It was warm out. Oh so very warm! As in bare legs and feet warm. Or eat ice cream outside warm. Although I try to stay positive through the cold winter months and put on a happy face through the cool, rainy days of spring, the truth is: I LOVE summer! Not surprisingly, so do my kids! What kid doesn't embrace the chance to run wild in big open spaces and blow bubbles and catch bugs and dig in dirt? And so I'm not going to tell you about our rather slow and disappointing week. Nope. That's not how I roll. I'm going to tell you about this one amazing day!

It began with the girls' super awesome Auntie coming by with the best surprise...
An eensy weensy frog!

There was no end to the squeals from all the girlies who surrounded the poor little thing!

After freeing Mr. Frog, we all continued together down the street to the park, but not without some trusty bug hunting equipement!
Doesn't this little huddle just make you smile?! All to see the fabulous find...

A pretty green beetle!

Finally, we made it to the park!
There is nothing quite like a good swing to put a grin on your face!

And make you feel absolutely content! :)

After quiet time, we were back out! As is usually the case, Mama had something up her sleeve...You see, this morning I watched this video and was reminded of the time Teacher Tom tried tall paintings using blocks...
So thats just what we did!

Not quite as lovely as the ones in the video but so fun, just the same! And later we got our fingers in it and spread it all around and made a beautiful mess. Only my camera died. Of course.

Taitum had her own plans. Who needs to do a tall painting when you can smear it everywhere, eat it and rub it in your clothes! I don't think you understand. Watch the video. This is when my battery dies but you'll get to see the master at work! ;)


video

I'm so glad our week wrapped up with this perfect day. I am so looking forward to more days like it! I'm planning to have a very outdoors-y month next month and really hoping the weather will cooperate! But for now, this will do.

I'm linking up to:




Tot School




Best toys for toddlers

Singing Sisters!

My girls love to sing! We spend our days singing and breaking out in spontaneous dance! It makes for a very cheerful day! They get it honest enough - I grew up to my Mom singing as she went about her household duties and more often than not I catch myself doing the same! Its only natural that my girls should pick up this joyful habit!

So here they are, singing their little hearts out!


video
If you're on my Facebook, you've seen this one before. It makes me laugh every single time I listen to it! The song is one Piper came up with on her own and that is sung pretty much on a daily basis around here!

video
Taitum, singing her favorite song: "I Love You". She often sings "Old MacDonald", too. Melts my heart every time I hear her sing-songy little voice!

I don't sing because I'm happy; I'm happy because I sing.  ~William James

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I Love This Man.


I love this man.

I love long weekends with this man.

Long weekends in which he dotes on me and our girls.

Getting up so I can sleep a little longer.

Coming up with fun adventures that only a Daddy would think of.

Going along with all of Mommy's extravegant Easter plans.

Reminding me that I look absolutely gorgeous to him, even when I have an 'I feel ugly' moment.

Working hard to get the taxes done on his day off so we don't have to pay someone else to do it. (Frugality is attractive.)

Watching girly shows with me because he knows I like his company.

Making secret pizza plans with the girls so I can have one extra 'no cook' night over the holiday.

Listening to my thoughts, engaging in deep, meaningful conversations and giving extremely valuable, wise advice. (We're BFFs, ya know! :D) 

Proving that he literally knows me better than I know myself.

Buying me coffee because he realizes its the little things that make me happy.

Yep, he is my man and I really, truly love him!


 



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Oh Happy Day!

Last night the girls and I made resurrection rolls since I knew we'd have no time for it today. These were so simple to make and turned out perfectly! Here's what we did:


First, they each took turns dipping a marshmallow in butter then rolling it in sugar and cinnamon.

Next, they placed it on a piece of Pilsbury crescent roll dough and wrapped the dough all around.
We popped them in the oven for 15 minutes.

When they were done and cooled off enough, we broke them up and 'ta-da'! They were hollow! The whole time we were making them we talked about what happened to Jesus after He died - did He stay dead? What did the disciples find when they went to His tomb? What does Jesus rising from the dead mean for us? Then when we broke open the hollow resurrection rolls, we cheered - "The tomb is empty! Jesus is alive! Whoo hooo!". This was a 'sweet' object lesson that we will certainly be doing again in years to come! Did any of you try out the Resurrection cookies? How did they turn out?

Sunday morning we did an egg hunt with the kids after they opened their Easter baskets.

They're getting REALLY good at this egg hunting buisness!

Once they were all found, they took turns opening them. I had them all numbered so they would be opened in the right order. These were Resurrection Eggs that I had put together the night before. As each egg was opened we told the part of the story that each item pertained to. Piper listened very intently and loved the surprise of what was inside each egg. The best part though was when she opened the last one and there was nothing in it! She gasped and looked at me like I had made a mistake. Then when I asked her what was in Jesus' tomb when the disciples went to look on Sunday morning, understanding dawned on her - "Nothing, Mama!" That's right, baby girl, Jesus is alive!

(I think it is so important to make sure my kids understand exactly what Easter is all about. That doesn't mean that we can't have fun or eat chocolate. In fact, I think teaching the importance of this holiday should be wrapped in sweet memories and kid oriented activities. This should be an exciting day for us as Christians, full of joy and celebration!)

The greatest day in history, death is beaten
You have rescued me
Sing it out, Jesus is alive
The empty cross, the empty grave
Life eternal, You have won the day
Shout it all, Jesus is alive
He´s alive!!!




Then we got all dressed up and went to church to celebrate! Daddy graciously took a picture of us 3 girls all prettied up but he looked very handsome himself! ;) Just sayin'.


So in case you haven't heard,
Jesus is alive!
Oh happy day!


Pretty Eggs, The Neighborhood Hunt and Swordplay!


We are so thankful for this long weekend. Our family was much in need of some together downtime! So our days have been filled with loads of activities with the 2 little people we love the best! :)


We tried dying Easter eggs naturally! I found instructions at Twig and Toadstool and used beets for pink, red cabbage for blue and turmeric for yellow.

The kids loved getting their hands in the bowls of dye (poor Tait had to be reduced to a spectator because she insisted on drinking the stuff! Bleh!) but I was worried it wasn't going to work. The eggs didn't seem to be changing color even though we held them under the dye for some time.

I did take the advice of leaving them overnight and I'm so thankful I did! We weighted them down with old dish clothes....

And the next morning, we were pleasantly surprised! The blue was fabulous! The pink was a little disappointing since it wasn't as vibrant as I'd hoped but I think it maybe should not have been left in as long. The girls and I made little holders for them and they are now gracing our kitchen table!

Then we were off on our neighborhood Easter egg hunt! It took Taitum a while to catch on but by the end she was picking up eggs left and right!

Piper is a seasoned pro and ended up with quite the bag full of treats!

Oh the bliss!

Life is good!

After a visit with my grandparents, much of the girls time was spent in a newly found favorite pastime...

Daddy bought them styrofoam swords while I was in the grocery store! They spent part of the afternoon outside swordfighting and then went right back at it after supper!

You've met your match, Daddy-o!

Ahoy Me Hearties!

I believe we may have found a new way to settle sibling disputes in our home! Haha! I have to admit, it is terribly fun, playing with swords! And a fantastic way to wear off that sugar induced energy!

Hope you are having a fantastic time making memories with your family!


Enjoy the little things in life for one day you will look back and realize they were the big things.

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"He wash ALL MY SIN AWAY!

"Why Jesus die, Mama?"

I smile.

"You know. Why don't you tell me this time?"

"He wash ALL MY SIN AWAY!"

Despite being involved in this conversation several times a day, I never cease to take joy in the answer my little girl gives. Not just because she dramatically waves her hands in front of her to symbolize 'washing away'. Its not simply due to the exuberance with which she replies. And although I delight in her ability to begin to understand the foundation of our faith, its not that alone.

My joy is found in the truth of that statement - "He washed all my sins away!". No longer am I held accountable. The price is paid and I am free! So today, Good Friday, is very, very good!  I revel in the truth that through His suffering and death, I am made right with God! My debt is erased, the burden is gone. I am able to live my life full of joy, following after Him!

What mercy was revealed
What selflessness and peace
My fate was surely sealed
Until He rescued me
His pardon for my sin
His bounty for my need
From slavery and shame
I am redeemed!






Want to know more about why Good Friday is so good? Go here!

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Easter Baking Day!

Today turned into Easter baking day! The girls were thrilled! Lots of hands on stuff plus some sweet treats makes for a delightful day!

My sister-in-law came over with the little cuties she looks after and all the supplies to make some Rice Krispie Eggs!

Don't they look yummy?!

Basically, all you do is follow the recipe to make Rice Krispie squares but form them into egg shapes. Then dip them in chocolate...

Then in some sprinkles...

And dig in! (After showing off your handy work for the camera!)

But that wasn't all! This evening I had to get some food ready for the potluck that follows our Good Friday service. These cute little chicks were on the menu and Piper was very pleased to be the assembler of these chicky-poos!

Our Best Bites promised they'd be easy and didn't steer us wrong! They were perfect for a 3 year old to do! I applied the icing...

And Piper added everything else! (Quite meticulously, I might add!)

Taitum, on the other hand, was the perfect taste tester!

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Easter Share!

I come across all kinds of great ideas when browsing through the blogosphere. Some I use, some I don't because we either just don't have enough time to fit everything in or its just a little too advanced for my kids. But I thought I'd share with you some of the great Easter activities that I've found! Perhaps there will be something there that you can use to add to the joy of this upcoming holiday!

Wooden Peg People - I cannot wait until the girls are old enough to make these themselves! Since they obviously are not specifically an Easter craft, I may attempt to make a few myself for them to play with should I manage to find the time. I just think they are so darn cute! Oh, and making a miniture playscape for them to live in would just be the icing on the cake!

Jelly Bean Prayer - this is something I hope to implement this year by adding a bag of jellybeans to their Easter baskets with the poem. I'd like to make this an Easter tradition.

Homemade Creme Eggs - I wanted so desparately to make these this year but for the life of me, could not find small enough egg molds! So I'm tucking this one away for next year and hoping I will remember to find some molds online far enough in advance!

Wax Painting Easter Eggs - This is one of those activities I've placed on the back burner til the girlies are older! These eggs are so bright and colorful though! I can't help but love them!

Hill of Calvery - Despite the fact I came across this one in enough time to accomplish it, I just felt like it was way too much work for this year. Especially when I considered that the grass would likely be pulled out in a matter of minutes and the little crosses used as a teether when my back was turned. Yep, this one is going on the "when they're older" list!

The Way Of Light Wreath - Pretty much the coolest thing ever.

Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs - We are doing this one! Or we're going to try, at least! I'll let you know how it goes!

Resurrection Eggs - This is another activity that we plan on implementing as part of our Easter morning. These are the eggs we are going to hide for the kids, then tell the Easter story as they open them!

Resurrection Cookies - I'm debating trying this one. I love the idea but anything that directs me to "beat egg whites into stiff peaks" usually fails when I'm in the kitchen. As well, considering that baking with littles can be a bit of a gong show, I can imagine that the goal of sharing the story of Jesus death and resurrection will get lost in the mayhem. SO, Resurrection Rolls are more likely the route we will take! ( They had me at refrigerated crescent dinner rolls! )

Easter File Folder Game - Piper and I so enjoy file folder games, I'm sure going to try to get this one together at least in time for the weekend!

Farm Fresh Eggs - Simply adorable!

Birch Bark Basket - This makes me smile. Someday....

Silk Dyed Eggs - These eggs are the prettiest I have ever seen! I was half tempted to sit and do these myself some night but lately cozying up on the couch with a blanket and a good book have been far too alluring! But I'm pretty sure that next Easter should include a girls night where we make these and hang them like this!

Wow! I had way more to share than I realized! I hope some of it inspires you! Tell me if you give one of these things a try! I love to hear of what worked well and what didn't, what your favorite idea was or of fun Easter related activities I didn't share!

Have a wonderful Easter, everyone!

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Easter Tot Time!

The past few weeks I haven't posted any Tot School posts. Basically, they would have been exact re-runs of what Piper's been doing and I didn't think there was any need for repitition. But this week ended up being different! Although you'll notice Taitum doing some of the same activities as Piper, there are also quite a few that I came up with that were specifically for her. Some weeks I just seem to have my act together. So here is Tait's egg-cellent week!



First, Taitum worked on a glueing activity. She's learning to stick things in the glue instead of licking it! Plus it is an excellent way to reuse the scrap paper from Piper's cut and collage and keep little hands busy and out of trouble! :)

Can you tell that she really likes using the do-a-dot markers?!

This was a flower color match from Lawteedah. I printed off 2 sets of the flower tops and glued one set to the stems (covering up the color word) making it much more appropriate for Tait. I was surprised at how good she was at this and that she did them all rather than getting bored and running away after 2 seconds!

Lately, Taitum has really taken to 'coloring', which are really just scrawls of crayon color all across the paper! But she likes it and loves doing it right beside her big sis!

Another color match activity. I would give her one half of an egg and she'd have to find the matching half. Again, she was surprisingly good at this! She'll even attempt to repeat the color name after me!

Then we filled the eggs with some different things...

And shook them to hear what they sounded like! Lots of noise = lots of fun!

When Piper was counting erasers, Taitum wanted to join in so her and I worked together on numbers 1-5. She was very particular about where each eraser should be placed!

Then she sorted all the erasers for me!

Taitum had her own little egg hunt. She added to the challenge by insisting on wearing a mitten! It was pretty hilarious to watch her trying to pick up the eggs with a mittened hand. She is the class clown though so she thoroughly enjoyed the laughs she was generating from such antics!

After she collected all the eggs, Piper helped her open them. They contained either a blue or red paper which she then sorted on a sheet I had ready.

Lastly, Taitum did an Easter egg relief painting along with her sister. In the end there was paint pretty much everywhere on Tait (at one point I caught her sticking the brush down her shirt and painting her chest!) and my kitchen but she loves painting so much, it totally makes it worth it!


That wraps up the highlights of our Tot times this week!

I'm linking up to:


Tot School

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I love motherhood.

We're a smiling family.

I'm a covenant keeper.

I love my husband.

I am above self pity.

I am a nation builder.

Motherhood=Adventure

Worth more than rubies.


“I am more convinced than ever that even in the midst of the mundane, burdensome, and oftentimes frustrating tasks of life allotted to me as a mother, God wants me to find his joy. He wants every single day of my life to be a celebration of his blessings, whether large or small. He wants me to celebrate life ~ the life He has given me.”

~ Sally Clarkson







My Hubby

My Hubby
He's my bestest.

Piper

Piper
She is my compassionate, dramatic, fun to be around 6 year old. She loves to shop, get dressed up fancy and anything else that screams girly!

Taitum

Taitum
She is my goofy, snuggly 4 year old who loves to sing and dance and smile all day long!

Renly

Renly
She is our one year old smarty pants! She does all she can to keep up with her older sisters and to keep them in line!

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