Monday, August 25, 2014

Grandma's retirement - the bookend

The best way to end a lovely weekend - pictures with all of their grandkiddos.

Grandma's retirement - golf cart fun

Grandma's Retirement - cousins in black and white

My kids were excited to get see their grandparents AND their cousins. The kids have grown up so much in the past year. They really enjoyed getting to spend time with each other. And I enjoyed getting to snap a couple of pictures of a couple of faces I don't get to see as much as I'd like. :)

Grandma's Retirement - the parties

Angie's work had a retirement celebration for her on Thursday; she had worked for Rosecrance for 30 years. Rosecrance is a facility that treats people with alcohol and drug addictions. I have only been a part of the family for a short time, in comparison, but am thankful for the compassion for people that she instilled in my husband. My husband is an engineer with the heart of a social worker. I know she has poured her emotions, time, and life into countess lives. While I am thrilled that we get to see more of her now that she is retired, I know she will be missed in her work community. I also know that her ministry will continue with her gifts of compassion and mercy. She just won't have all of the paperwork and on-call hours! 

Cake was a particular highlight for the children (and adults!).

 Siblings :)

Friends joined us at the house the next evening to celebrate Angie's retirement. There was a lot of good conversation to go with the delicious food.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Grandma's retirement - part one

I am so thankful that Angie is now retired. I'm writing this now a month after her retirement, and I have been blessed already by her willingness to serve and help me and my children during a challenging period in my own life. She's been down now twice! And the kids are always happy to see her. I heard just a couple of days ago, "I don't want Grandma to go home!" I am so glad she is retired. It was such a relief to have another adult with me this last week with my children. She did the bulk of the cooking, cleaning and child nurturing this week; all four of my babies were blessed by her service this week. The Lord's timing could not have been better.

All that said, we did go up to Rockford to help her celebrate, and I took some pictures (of course!). Here are the first couple of pictures - Grandma with her grand-kids.

being Hannah

My middle one is content to dig in the dirt, sit in the grass, and explore on her own. I was sitting taking pictures, and Hannah was content to just enjoy being on her own. Being able to capture the simplicity of childhood is a gift.

Love you, Mom!

One of the best parts of having ten acres and a barn is the dirt, trailers, and tractors. Maybe someday we'll have some animals to go with our acreage. For now we have kids, and that's about all this mama can handle. :) That's why my parents bring down Camus so we can experience having a pet without all of the responsibility.

Kite flying

We had a mildly windy day on the 5th of July, so Papa was particularly wonderful to let the girls fly their kites. Papa definitely got a good workout, running back and forth with the girls, trying to get their kites into the air!

I like this picture for two reasons - Abigail's wide open mouth and a glimpse of our large garden. This is our first year that we've successfully been able to grow sweet corn. My girls LOVE sweet corn and are happy to have an abundance at our dinner table. stride :)

 I took a seat in the grass, enjoying the joy of my children and the beauty of being down on our property.

I think Papa was having fun too! I couldn't help but reminisce of all the times my dad took me and my brothers out to throw a baseball, fly a kite, or go for a family bike ride. I have a great dad.

Thursday, August 7, 2014


We had a very quiet Fourth of July this year, which was a blessing. I think quiet and relaxed is the current theme during this season of my life. Our month of June into July was a very busy one - celebrating my grandmother's 90th birthday in Iowa, followed by celebrating my father in-law's birthday in Rockford the next weekend, followed by the Fourth of July. We needed a quiet weekend just to catch up with the weeds growing in our garden and sleep!

It's been lovely to get to see my brother, Dave, while he is home during his life transition from the Peace Corps.

Family didn't arrive at our house until the Fourth, so Rodney and I took advantage of a quiet Thursday (when we usually have Bible study in our home) to go on a date. We enjoyed a delicious meal, followed by ice cream, and a walk along the River Front. We even stopped at the bench where Rodney proposed a little more than 8 years ago!

On the actual Fourth, we ate a delicious meal of beef brisket (slow cooked on the grill by my hubby) with all of the fixings. Yum! Our Texas girls enjoy this Texas tradition almost as much as their parents and grandparents!

We didn't take the girls to fireworks this year. Remember how I said everyone was short on sleep? But we did pick up some sparklers, which from their faces you can see were enjoyed by all.