Sunday, July 31, 2011

A Use For Old T-shirts...

...other than the rag bag that is :)

Hula hoop loom

One very happy boy:)

Who gave his first rug to his big brother and is ready to make another for himself:)

Saturday, July 30, 2011

I've been avoiding posting here any of the negative/stressful things that have been going on in my life the last few months. I was avoiding posting at all for a while, not knowing if I should "go there" or not. I started this blog as a sort of journal and an outlet for bits of writing and photography etc. As you know if you've followed at all it's really a hodge-podge of family journaling and my thoughts and photos and so on. I've used it as a place to share triumphs and to process grief. I love that I can stay in touch with old friends through it.

I still don't know what I will share on here, if anything, of the struggles I've been going through. Some are deeply personal. Some are controversial. Some feel like whining after years of the same pain. So, if posts are few and far between that is the main reason. The other reason is one of the negatives-poor health. And all the energy I am putting into finding out how I can be the healthiest I can be, it's taking a lot out of me. As well as the discouragement of being here still, again, whatever. And that's where the feeling of whining comes in...

I know this is a good outlet for me and can help me focus on the positive. The happy pictures and fun times:) I will endeavor to keep up with at least a few posts of what we are up to if nothing else. I want to be able to look back on this summer and remember the spots of joy.

"Do not fear, for I am with you;

Do not anxiously look about you, for I am

your God.

I will strengthen you, surely I will help you,

Surely I will uphold you with my righteous

right hand

Isaiah 41:10

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Chickens, Visiting Cousins, and Garden Goodness

Sweet new baby! I always forget how small bantam chicks are :D

Big Chicken, guarding the path to the coop
One of our new batch, he doesn't have a name yet. But he does have five hens of his own by virtue of being the only rooster out of 14 not currently in the freezer. He's the same breed as Gimpy and Cora and Coraline and was the underdog in the pack we had before. I really wanted to keep him, he's the only one of that color that hatched out, so I was glad he was calm enough to join the crew...

Two of his ladies:

Part of the happy chicken family. You can see the boss, Gimpy, keeping a sharp eye on me! :)

We had Haylie over for a few hours the other day. After a bit over what activity to engage in the boys convinced her that riding bikes would be fun...

Joshua stayed close for the most part ;)

And when she needed help to get up the hill...

Hmmm....Pulling didn't work so well. Maybe you'd better get off...

I'll push it up the hill for you...

(She insisted on coming over in her pajamas, Lol! Maybe it seemed more like a party that way?)

More rose lusciousness...



Dublin Bay *LOVE*

A GIANT squash blossom. Seriously! It's the size of a dinner plate.

Squash leaves

Raspberry lane. One of several!! These things go crazy in the garden. Grandfather was out there with the weed-eater making room to walk...

Radish blossoms...

and honeybee visitors:)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Swimming Lesson Joy

One of Brannon's very favorite activities is swimming lessons. It all started with Grandma Karen Really wanting her boys to have swimming lessons for safety reasons. Now Brannon chooses the lessons every summer:) He LOVES it, it's so fun to watch him!!

He really struggled with his backstroke when he first started doing it. He'd always kick water in his face. He'd stop over and over again on his way across the pool. Sometimes he'd cry. But he kept at it, this boy who would much rather quit anything that frustrating.
He dives beautifully...


Teacher love

Happy boy

Workin' hard!

Graduating from his second lesson this summer

And on to a third (the first year he's ever made it through more than 1 1/2 two week lessons without getting sick for so long he had to quit until next year!!)

Myrna would have the other kids watch him dive as an example and boy did he love that!

He also made friends with a six-yr-old girl in his class and taught her how to do a few things while they played together. He was very proud of himself and pleased to have won a friend so quickly :)

On the second to last day of every lesson there is "life saving day" where they all jump in the pool with their clothes on and learn what it feels like to float with extra weight...

When they're littler they then jump in with life jackets on and practice grabbing the hand or ankle of another kid until they are all linked together. This year though the bigger kids practiced...

How to save someones life without endangering your own...

If you accidentally let go of your article of clothing while tossing it you slip into the pool, hang on tight to the side and offer your legs to the struggling person

And, after a successful stint at life-saving practice you get to race your water "ponies" across the pool

The only time you are expected to keep your face out of the water...

Swimming stars:)

I'm so proud of you Brannon! I loved watching your confidence grow this year. I'm especially proud of you for overcoming a difficulty and continuing through frustration (and your back stroke improved tremendously). I appreciated, as always, your kindness and patience with someone younger and less able than yourself. And I so enjoyed your joy! I love you Son! Great job:)

Monday, July 11, 2011

Beach Fun

We had a great little family escape to the beach last week:) The four of us plus Mom, my sis and niece ran over the coast for a few hours. We were all super tired after a stressful couple of weeks and we didn't play as much as usual (except Joshua;) but it was great resting on the beach and enjoying each other.

Mother/daughter fun

Joshua was SO looking forward to flying his kite at the beach since it's not really windy enough at home. But he had cut the tails off and so it just went round in circles.

I think he's still enjoying himself though...
Looking for a good spot to settle in

A little rock climbing...

A warm pool...

and warm sand...

I had equal fun watching Brannon standing still enjoying the view and Joshua running in the waves. They were both having such a good time:)

Pressing the water out of the sand...


Warming up again, Lol!

Making friends

Grandma trying to keep Haylie warm

Hi Babe