Saturday, August 31, 2013

Are you ready for some football?

It's days like today that I wish I would have went to a college with a celebrated football team (but when basketball starts I'll be glad to cheer on my alma mater).  It's college football day!  And, that means there are a few in our house who are excited!  Apparently the dog is one of them!
Jack also had his first football game this past week ... no pictures on that yet, I needed to see the first game and soak it in before I'll be prepared to get some action photos. 

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Fun on the Go {Nora's Purse}

Our girls are not girly-girls ... at least not yet.  But, they do like playing with their baby dolls, and it seems Nora is fond of accessorizing.  It is not unusual to find her with sunglasses on (usually upside down), strings of beads strung around her neck (or arms), or with a "purse" over her shoulder.
It wasn't until I downloaded this picture that I really took the time to look closely at what this little baby doll diaper bag says - "Fun on the Go" - makes me smile because that pretty much sums up Nora.  This girl is BUSY!  On.The.Go.  And, she's pretty fun too.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Frog Man

We are blessed to have sweet neighbors that allow us to use their pool.  It is quite common for the boys to make up some "creative" game in the pool.  On this particular day Samuel morphed into "Frog Man" {said with a deep, overemphasized announcer's voice} ... it's hard to tell, but he does have another set of flippers on his feet.
Not sure what else to say about this except that this pretty much speaks to Samuel and his personality.  Being a mom to boys is entertaining, but admittedly there are some things I will just never understand!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Parenting a Near Teen ... is Hard Work

Here is it, August already ... time to start thinking about the quickly approaching start to a new school year.  And, with that, I cannot help but look at Jack and wonder how he has moved from my little boy to a young man, seemingly overnight.  Jack will be going into 6th grade, and I cannot help but wonder if this will be the school year that he grows to look me in the eye - he is approaching fast.  I love this guy, he is clever, passionate, tough and yet sensitive.
And, here's the but ... but, man-o-man, parenting is hard work (I know that no one will argue with that), and each stage brings a new challenge.  This stage comes with great sweetness and also random sass, sometimes both within the same exchange and some days more sass than sweetness.  I know that the hormones are partially to blame, and a strong-willed character trait contributes.  I am learning every day how to be a mom to a near teen, some days I'm better at meeting this challenges than others. 

I just began reading Sparkly Green Earrings by Melanie Shankle, in it she talks about being pregnant with her daughter and remodeling her house, including a shabby tile job by a contractor who oddly had never tiled before.  She states the following about entering parenthood:

"We were going to walk this road, hoping for the advice of friends and parents and well-meaning old ladies at the grocery store to get us through, but most of all, knowing we were completely dependent on God to give us wisdom about how to lay all the tiles of childhood as straight as we could to smooth in the grout with the hope of covering our own imperfections and making them work with the overall design and personality of our child."

So thankful for the opportunity to parent the kiddos we have been blessed with, including this young man. 

Baseball is done for the summer ... football is just beginning ... braces have been placed ... where, oh where, has my baby gone?  Seeking wisdom always ...

Monday, August 5, 2013

Nora in the Northwoods {For Real this Year}

Last year we ventured up north to get away as a family of five, anxiously waiting for a very important step in the process of bringing Nora home.  God was so present in all of the details of last year's get away ... from the timing of the paperwork approval, the location of a FedEx provider (and the owner's own adoption story), finding a small, local business for printing, scanning, e-mailing, and all of this amidst swimming, fishing, camp fires and board games.  We were in awe of how Nora was so much already a part of our family and our 2012 family get away, Nora was in the north woods with us.

This past week we again ventured up north but as a family of six.  The time away was great and the opportunity to watch Nora explore, discover and cause mischief, admittedly exhausting, in a new place was quite fun.  To see how God has moved our family in one short (sometimes seemingly long) year is remarkable.

Last year's post on Nora in the Northwoods contains many of the little details.  This year's post is riddled with many photos ... sit back, grab a cup of a coffee or a large diet coke and take a glimpse into our little family (or, scroll through quickly and move through your day as this little blog continues to be my journal into our family life, to document these moments for a certain Mama who is aging and forgetting details).

Me and my girls 
Exploring the water 

Um, driving a pontoon boat ... or at least little girls pretending to ... and, not so little boys actually being given permission to (oh dear, a glimpse into my life a little more than four years from now when Jack begins to drive ... gulp) 
Oodles of fishing


Miniature golf 

Side note - I adore this photo of Nora, when Lydia is excited about something she pumps her fist and raises her arms while saying "YES!" ... a certain little sister has figured out a perfect imitation of this!

The fish museum 
Nora surprising all of us figuring out to drink from a straw (we were all quite proud of this Little Miss!) 
Indoor activities when the weather wasn't the greatest ... puzzles, forts, hide and seek

Looking sweet

Catching turtles and frogs 

 And, falling asleep in moving "vehicles" 
This is Nora, in the canoe ... this happened multiple times ... oh, if only the girl would sleep this soundly at night 

Apparently I was not the only one exhausted after long days ... 
And, that was photo overload of Nora in the Northwoods 2013!