By 6:00pm I finally had all the girls’ stuff labeled and organized and ready to put in a suitcase. I just need to finish my stuff and clean the house. Sometimes getting ready for a trip is exhausting!

Tomorrow morning the girls and I will leave for our 10 day trip North. I can’t wait to see my sisters and brother-in-laws and all their kiddos! I pray it will be a good time. I don’t do well without sleep, and I don’t sleep well when I’m not in my bed. I also don’t do well without Brent kicking me in the butt telling me to get over myself and my tiredness and have a good time (figuratively of course =) ) I’m praying that Elliana sleeps past 5:30am (her standard waking time when not in her own bed). I’m praying Avery will sleep even though she has to share a bed with me. I’m praying I will sleep even though I have to share a bed with Avery. And most of all, I’m praying that we’ll all just relax and not worry about the 2 weeks after vacation when life is a bit rocky as the girls readjust to reality. Vacation here we come!!!!

20 minutes at the Waterpark

Apparently this is why they say no running at the waterpark. 20 minutes into our fun family day at the pool, Elliana’s body wanted to go faster than her legs could move, and she face planted into the cement. Since blood and public pools don’t mix, we headed home to take early naps. Those 20 minutes wore us all out!
It doesn’t seem to bother her much though, and as long as you pretend you’re beeping her nose like a car horn, she’ll even let us put medicine on the cut. Her older sister should take lessons from her!

Memorizing Scripture

About 2 months ago, Brent and I started noticing Avery’s ability to memorize things. She would memorize songs after hearing them just once. She could repeat everything Brent or I ever said, and she definitely could memorize any cartoon we let her watch. As we talked about it, we decided that instead of filling her head with untrue things, we would teach her to memorize the truth of scripture. So we bought this book that has a verse for every letter of the alphabet, and I’m spending 2 weeks on each letter and each verse. For the letter “A”, we made cardboard A’s, went on scavenger hunts, taped words together, and just did all sorts of fun things, all while memorizing Matt. 7:7. For the letter “B”,the verse was Gal. 5:22-23. We’ve spent the week singing songs, making sugar cookie B’s, and then I made a chart of all the fruit of the spirit so every time she displays a fruit of the spirit, she gets a sticker in that square. We’re hoping that will help teach her what love, joy, peace, etc… mean! I posted a video of her saying her verses below.

July 4th

We spent the 4th of July at Grapevine Lake with our friends Susan and Andrew and the Oestreich Family. Earlier that day, we had been pretty sad that we weren’t in Iowa this year sitting at the Urbandale parade, so we were grateful that Susan and Andrew had the great idea of heading out to the lake. We all had a great time!

Elliana was still a bit sick, so she spent the majority of the time with me on the blanket in the shade. She had a great time playing on that blanket. It is amazing was a 1 year old can find to entertain herself.
After a couple hours on the beach, we met the Oestreich’s at the dock and they were gracious enough to take us for a ride on their boat. This picture was taken right after we got on the boat. The girls had never been on a boat before so they were still a little uncertain about what was going on.
By the end of the day, they both loved it! I asked Avery what her favorite part of the day had been, and she looked at me with a little spark in her eye and said, “the boat. Let’s do that again mommy!”
We still haven’t seen fireworks in person in 2 years, but Brent and I enjoyed the ones on TV last night =) We figure one day our kids will be old enough to stay awake until its dark outside, but for now, we enjoyed the relaxing day at the beach, on the boat, and the Boston Pops fireworks on TV.

Avery’s Bible

Avery’s favorite book right now is her Bible. She “reads” it all the time. A few weeks ago, Elliana spilled some water on the table and a little bit got on Avery’s Bible and she said with her arms on her hips, “Oh no. My Bible. I read it every morning!”(those of you who know her well, imagine her high squeaky whiny voice at this point) Pretty cute. We love that she loves reading her Bible, except maybe after the 100th time she asks me to read it to her in one day =)
Tonight after I finished reading a few stories to her from the Bible, I left the room to get her some milk. When I came back, she was reading to herself, and this is how her version of the Bible read. “Fe, Fi, Fo, Fum, the giant can’t come to my birthday party. Go back to school giant.” So maybe the salvation message hasn’t penetrated her mind yet, but at least she has the habit of reading the Bible every day =) Oh, and tonight as we were praying, here was Avery’s prayer. “Dear Jesus, be with Goldilocks and help the bears be nice to her. Amen.” Don’t you love kids?!!!

Some Firsts

We had a big weekend of first time experiences for the girls. The big exciting one is maybe going to be a little gross for those of you who don’t have kids =) But yesterday for Elliana’s 14 month celebration, she went #2 in the big girl potty!!! And no, I’m not trying to potty train her yet, but still very exciting that I had one less poopy diaper to change yesterday. I really do think she did know what she was doing when she was up there though. I won’t go into the gross details to tell you how I know though =) Pretty fun stuff for a mom who hates changing dirty diapers!

Avery also ate her first corn on the cob this past week. Being from Iowa, I’ve always been pretty picky about my corn on the cob. You usually can’t get really good corn in the South. But I found some this past week, and we all enjoyed it tremendously! You can’t beat hamburgers and corn on the cob in the summer =)

Weekend in Review

We spent the last few days in Duncan visiting Brent’s family. It was a whirlwind of a weekend, but the girls had a lot of fun. As you’ll be able to see from the pictures, we didn’t stop all weekend. We’ll just say that we got home at 8:00pm on Saturday night, and Brent and I were asleep by 9:00pm. Here are some of the highlights =) To see the rest, go to our web album at

Here are the girls playing at the splash park. They had a blast playing and throwing water on MaMa and Gramps!
Kiddiland is a little amusement park in Duncan. It just has 4 rides, and Avery and Elliana had a blast! There’s a little park next door so we played there as well.

Breakfast with Gramps…a chocolate cupcake =) Avery has been going to a lot of birthday parties lately and so keeps asking when her party will be. Last week when she was talking to Gramps on the phone, she asked him if she could have her birthday cake while she was there. Of course he delivered with this really cute cupcake. Unfortunately, we were so busy all weekend the only time we were home to eat it was Saturday morning! Avery thought she was in heaven =)

Amber’s baby shower. Here Avery is trying to tickle the baby in Aunt Amber’s tummy =) Elliana stayed home with Brent and attempted to take her morning nap. Why is it that when kids are exhausted, they can’t sleep?!!!
We ended the shower with a very tired Avery who tripped, fell, and hit her head on the corner of the table. This bloody gash is the evidence. It wouldn’t be bad except Avery is petrified of bandaids, and she is even more petrified of people touching her owies. We’ll just say cleaning up this one was interesting =)

It Has Arrived!

Brent’s deer has finally arrived, and it is already hanging in his office. It came just in time as we said good bye to all the deer in the freezer this past weekend. Not that we actually ate all of it already. I accidently left the garage freezer door open last week when I grabbed some meat out of it, and so all that was left was ruined. I have to admit though that I was not sad to dump the remaining meat in the trash! This deer was pretty big and so a little gamey. We’ve been eating it for 8 months, and I was definitely ready for some meat without the extra kick! Below are some pictures of his deer as well as the rest of his office in the new building.

Father’s Day Weekend

Avery getting some hugs from “the big mouse”
Elliana and Avery riding in the truck together
Going for a walk with Grandpa. Elliana is suddenly attached to this apron. She wants it and her princess crown on all the time!
Blowing bubbles with Grandpa and Grandma

We got lucky on Father’s Day weekend. Not only did the girls get to have fun with their daddy(who by the way is the greatest dad ever), I got to have fun with my daddy as well! My dad had meetings in Plano last week, so after the meetings, they came over to spend some time with us. We had a great time. The girls had their first experience at ChuckE Cheese and lots of bike riding and bubble blowing time with Grandpa and Grandma. Avery loved saying Happy Father’s Day all day and even prayed (unprompted!!) that daddy would have a happy father’s day. I hope both dads had a great weekend! We love you!

Finger painting anyone

I watch a couple kids 2 days a week so I try to have fun things planned during those days. We usually spend the afternoon in the pool or sprinklers, but yesterday the weather didn’t cooperate. Luckily last weekend I had picked up some crafts on the clearance isle of Target, and we were able to have a finger painting and sand art afternoon. Sorry there’s aren’t any pictures of the sand art! Have you ever tried to pour sand into a little bottle with a 13 month old, a 19 month old and a 2 year old? There are no extra hands for a camera!! But here’s some of their finger painting creations. They hand a blast. Notice the difference between the two older girls. Libby uses one finger and Avery uses her whole hand, arm, and yes, even her toes! Avery is my little creative artist. She loves it.

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