Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Lots and Lots of 'looks'

I mentioned last week that I had almost forgotten to 'look' for and take quick phone pics of my everyday blessings.  This week I was very conscious and saw so many!
Monday morning the kids had their 8 year old dr. appts.  I had to laugh when I took this first picture of all 3 waiting on the exam table....reading quietly at 8am.  We've come a long way from 3 baby car seats, to a giant triple stroller and cheerios everywhere, to all 3 trying to fit on my lap.  They all got amazing reports, healthy, strong, TALL 8 year olds.  You'd never guess how tiny they started if you didn't know.  Blessed beyond words.
Wednesday I surprised the kids with 'Bertie Botts Every Flavor Beans' for an after school snack (with popcorn and smoothies at Grandma Mosher's).  Noah loved them, Abby tried a few, Sophie tried one and Tom spit his out!  :)
For two Wednesday evenings we have Religious Ed until 6 and soccer practice for the girls at 6:30, so we made the most of the quick turnaround with a picnic at the soccer fields.  Hey, it's a family dinner!
Friday we met Tom for hot chocolate/chai after school/work.  They got creative with our it.
Driving home one evening Abby looked up at the sky and said, "Mom, it's God shining his Grace on us"  If that doesn't make you stop in your tracks to inhale the beauty of the rays of sun shining down, and the daughter that notices....(they are working on a talent show surprise with America the Beautiful, hence the wording) 
Silly sisters on the kitchen counter
Saturday morning we had a First Communion Reflection/practice.  The kids painted plates and made bread.  Noah was selected to do the first reading at the mass.  So proud of him.
Saturday afternoon the kids all got inspired to paint, it was amazing.
Saturday night I wore my new pink jeans and Tom and I enjoyed a wonderful date night (thanks mom and dad!).  We had onion rings (and dinner) at Clementine's in South Haven....yum! 

Friday, April 20, 2012

A Great Read!

I Blame Eve by Susanna Foth Aughtmon

This is the third book I have read by Susanna Foth Aughtmon, behind All I need is Jesus and a Good Pair of Jeans and My Bangs Look Good and Other Lies I Tell Myself. I enjoyed this book as much, if not more than the other two. In her most recent book, I Blame Eve Aughtmon blends stories from her life, being a wife and mother of three boys, with wit and humor shedding light on topics such as craving what does not satisfy, perfectionism and control issues. I found myself nodding my head and agreeing over and over again throughout this book. In Chapter 12, “I am a Perfectionist” Susanna talks about the panic that followed the news that friends would be stopping by on a busy Sunday…in 30 minutes. As her eyes wandered around her ‘messy’ house all she could see were the crumbs on the floor and the laundry mountains on the couch (is it wrong that inside I cheered a little to know that other people have those things as well?) and she went in to full out panic mode. She follows this story with a wonderful discussion about Jesus and concludes with a few wonderful sentences, “Forget about being perfect. He’s (Jesus) got you. Let the worry, the anxiety, the feverish cleaning and anxious preening fall to the wayside, and rest in the knowledge that when you put your heavenly Father first, he will meet all your needs and then some. Even when your house is dirty.” Honestly, I could feel the tension leaving my shoulders when I read those lines.
I Blame Eve is a wonderful read. If you are a busy wife and mom you will relate to and savor the stories in this book. You will laugh, you will nod your head in agreement, you will pray, you will grow.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Almost forgot to 'look'

For the first time since Jan 1 when my year of 'looking' began, I almost forgot this past week. I got to mid-week and realized I only had 1 picture! I had to make up for lost time! The experience did make me more diligent with this week! So, here's what I was able to put together for last week....
My grandpa Low was in Holland for Easter weekend, because of some car repairs he stayed around on Monday. We were thrilled to have a few hours with him that afternoon. The kids had an art lesson with him after school. Love.
The next picture is a little strange....let me explain. This is the soaking knees of Noah's jeans. Every. Single. Night. Grass stains appear on his knees in no time flat, leading me to become quite amazing at stain removal (if I do say so myself). This phenomena even led Tom to ask, "What do you put on those pants....every night they are stained and every morning they are clean?" I'll let you in on my secret combination if you have a crazy grass stained kid like I do :)
My kiddos in the backseat of Tom's car...strange to have the car seat free ability to not take the mini-van!
Sophie's hair in a 'knot'
Sunday the girls and I spent the afternoon shopping in GR. We went in search of a flea market, which ended up being a flop, so we enjoyed hot chocolate and chai before heading off to the bookstore, the shoe store (first communion shoes), and Nordstrom Rack. Girl Time!!
Even though I got a late start on the week, the blessings were abundant. They are always there.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The gifts of a week together!

I'm a little late to post, and I actually have many more pictures taken with my 'real' camera, but for now here is a little snippet of the gifts we found on spring break last week. Even though I still had to teach (thank you to Bill and Joan, my mom, and a couple of play dates!) we still had an amazing week. Sunday we went glow bowling, shared Abby's famous tomato soup, and captain sundae with both sets of grandparents! Monday morning started with jammies and snuggles, doesn't get any better than that! Tuesday and Thursday the kids did short classes at the DeGraff Nature Center and I took a few moments to enjoy the sunshine and my book. Wednesday I picked the girls up at their friend Ella's house in time to meet all of the frogs and tadpoles they had caught!! That house is like summer camp!! Thursday night my mom joined Abby, Sophie and I for manicures. The girls have had their nails polished before, but never a full manicure! It was so fun!! Friday and Saturday we took the kids to Chicago for two days of fun (and TONS of food....4 stops all featured on Food Network...more details later!). Sunday we celebrated Easter all together with: my parents, Tom's parents, my Uncle Brian and Aunt Melanie, and my Grandpa Low. Hours of joy, laughter, food, and love at my parents beautiful sun filled home in Holland. Couldn't think of a better way to wrap up a wonderful week.
Monday morning was sad to pack the kids back off to school. Noah must have been feeling the same way when he said, "Mom, if you drive us to school today we'll get more time with you and make spring break last just a little longer." Needless to say 2 seconds later we were all snuggled up on the couch with our books to savor the extra 15 minutes before we had to leave to get them to school on time. Every moment is a gift.