April Swim

It was a beautiful day… it was… Outside, it was a lovely 88 degrees.  It was our first warm day in quite some time.  While I’m definitely not ready for the heat of summer, the warmth after our cold winter felt so nice!  Still… you couldn’t pay me enough to jump into that frigid pool!  I agreed to let the boys swim, thinking they wouldn’t get past their tippy toes.  They more than proved me wrong!

Aaaaand, we found 3 ripe peaches among the many little green ones.  Amazingly, the boys got them before the rats.  I spent my time thinning out the peach tree while the boys swam and enjoyed their first peach.

I can’t believe summer is around the corner.  For now, I am just hoping to make it until Spring Break, (which begins after we finish school tomorrow.)  Hope I can survive!  🙂

Today after school, the kids sat and looked through all our old blog books for hours.  They had so much fun reminiscing and showing me pictures.  “Can you believe we did that?”  “Do you remember when… ?”  I tried downloading pictures a few weeks ago, but ran into some technical difficulties.  Their enthusiasm inspired me to troubleshoot and get these pictures up.  Thankfully, I was successful, so I hope to blog more regularly once again!

Hope you’re enjoying some warm spring weather where you are!

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Camp Create!

A week ago today, this was the view outside my house… A symbol of hope and peace that God gave directly to me before I had to go inside to pack for my trip to the Craft House in Kansas… which also happens to be decorated in rainbows.  God is so good!

Imagine a 1903 Farmhouse… colorfully decorated, thoughtfully updated, but filled with vintage charm.  Throughout the house there are touches of color, whimsy, and craftiness; (and fresh flowers, too!)

Every room was filled with metal framed beds and vintage quilts.  Here was my bed!

We mingled, met ladies from across the country, and were served our first meal with our one and only rule; no clearing your plates!  We were served and pampered the entire weekend.  Our first craft was a simple rope rainbow.  I made two, though I should have made more — my girls all loved them!  Throughout the weekend, ladies would jump in and make more; some even made necklaces and earrings!

Did I mention the food was UH-MAZING!?  Every meal from scratch…

We headed to the antique store and barn our first morning since rain was in the forecast for the second day, (though it never came!)  I’d say the barn was more torture than anything, because I knew a huge, gorgeous old library catalog wasn’t going to fit into my bag to bring back to California.  (Bummer)  But, I am happy with the little things I did find, and can’t wait to plant succulents in my “new” bread pans!  Thanks for the fun red door pic with me, Kimberlee!  I am so blessed to have finally met you and enjoyed the cinnamon rolls that have tortured me through the screen for so many years.  They didn’t disappoint!

These two… God placed them in my room, and their love for Jesus touched my heart!  What a blessing to get to know them!

“Creative Carmella” was the sweetest, and had me wanting to move to Tennessee to be her neighbor!  (And, to learn all her jewelry making magic!)

We had a second full day of crafting, including jewelry making and painting.  I will never look at clouds the same, again!  Aaaand, French toast with raspberry butter is incredible!

Top Left: Meg, founder of Camp Create and owner of the Craft House,  Top Right: Abbey and Tanya,  Bottom Left:  Kina,   Bottom Right: Melinda

The “obligatory” picture on the rainbow stairs with sweet Leighanne fromTexas.

Top:  Kristi,  Bottom: Carmela,  Right:  “Honey,” our wonderful speaker for the weekend, sharing humor, God’s word, and goodies from her ‘happy bag’

Heart glasses courtesy of Honey’s Happy Bag!

Thank you, Lord, for the opportunity to be a part of this special group and to meet so many wonderful women.

SPRING!!

Apricot Blossoms

Plum Blossoms

… And peaches!  It must be spring!  We heard it was suppose to rain today, so we spent as much time outside this morning as possible.  Sure enough, around noon it got dark and then… the rain was back!  It’s a good thing, too, because I have lots to do, and didn’t need to spend time  dilly-dallying out in the garden today.  But oh, it was nice!

Of course, now I shouldn’t spend time blogging… I have packing to do!  Tomorrow morning I leave for Kansas and Camp Create at the Whatever Craft House.  I am THRILLED!

Happy Spring, everybody!

Painted Ladies

For weeks, I commented on them.  Every time we drove anywhere, it felt as though it were fall and the leaves were coming down!  Thousands of them.  (Sadly, hundreds that ended as splats on my windshield.)  It was spectacular.  This year’s “superbloom” has millions of painted lady butterflies migrating from Mexico.  There are fewer now… but for about 6 weeks, every time we went out, there were hundreds.  Today I went out to capture these pictures before they are all gone!

St. Patrick’s Day 2019

We did the usual… Lucky Charms and muffins with green sugar for breakfast.  The kids donned tattoos and dressed in green.  We added a few sparkly leprechaun hats this year.  Then it was off to church.  I spent the afternoon at a dinner theater celebrating a friend’s birthday, then came home for some corned beef and cabbage with more friends.  The kids requested another round of Lucky Charms today, so cereal it was.  Should I have them finish them off tomorrow, or should I save them for another day?  Hmmm… let’s see what the morning brings!

After the Rain…

It seems like we went right from rain to wind… but I am not complaining.  I think we all needed the blue skies and vitamin D, even if they did come with a breeze!  We spent the entire day out cleaning the yard, and the kids were thrilled to help.  (Granted, they got out of math…)  We filled the garbage cans, swept, dug, and even got around to a little planting.  We are just a month away from our school garden contest, so we really needed to get that started!  I am now longing to be outdoors more, but not until this wind dies down.    Our peach tree is once again loaded and needing to be thinned out.  Every time I pass it, I pick as many little suckers as possible, and throw them to the chickens.  Anyone else excited for Spring???

LEGOLAND… again!

Last week, we drove down to San Diego to meet my college roommate and her family at Legoland.  The drive down was spectacular… rolling hills of purple, orange, and yellow.  We saw many hikers enjoying the “super bloom” up close, and I just had to take a picture from our car window.

Since she lives in Minnesota, this was my first time meeting her kiddos.  All 3 of her boys are exactly 2 months older than my youngest 3.   (We planned that well; ha!)

I asked my daughter to snap a picture of just Heidi and me.  It is hard to believe that we met 26 years ago as college freshman!

The 2 little boys went on this ride over and over — their squeals and giggles were priceless!  The 2 middle guys went on once and announced t was not the most comfortable ride “down there;” ha!

Following Legoland, we went to BJ’s for dinner, and to celebrate Heidi’s birthday.  We were exhausted, but full of joy.  Above is a picture of the flower fields… it’s hard to see, but it’s a huge field of tulips.  Indeed, all this rain sure made for a beautiful show of flowers!

We loved our day with you, Heidi and family!  I think we will need to plan a trip to Minnesota asap!

Nuh, nuh, nuh, nuh, nuh, nuh, nuh, nuh….

BATMAN!!

That’s about all the words I have for right now.  I’m running low on sleep.  I’ve had some not-so-proud mommy moments this week, which may have involved way too much yelling!  Tired kids added to it all.  And then there’s the puppy… sweetest thing ever, but doesn’t allow me to do dishes because she has to be on my little standing mat… chases the cats and chickens until they are terrified… cannot – or – will not potty train… and of course puts every last thing in her mouth except  her toys… loves eating kitty and chicken poop… can be found on our table eating leftovers if we turn our backs for a moment… or eating cat food…

Yeah, I’m beat!  But, still smiling!  Despite it all, and in the midst of it all, this is our life and it is good!  Not-to-mention, we had a much-needed week of sunshine!  Woot!

Ok, this post is really random… I’d better get some sleep while I can!

SNOW!!!

No doubt our winter has been anything but “typical” for Southern California… but SNOW!?!?!?  Technically, my midwest friend told me this was not actual snow, but “grapple?”  (Never heard of it!)  Whatever it was, the kids sure had fun… both the boy in short sleeves and shorts as well as the girl in boots and a coat!  I wish I could post the videos; they had a blast — especially the dog.  What next, So Cal??

Meet Boba!

In the past 17 months since Triscuit died, we have had a handful of opportunities to adopt another dog.  The kids have put in hours of research as to what kind of dog we should get next.  We’ve talked to dog owners, done our own research, and concluded that we just weren’t ready.

Fast forward to last month.  A neighbor I see regularly on my morning jogs informed me he was getting another dog.  It is a rescue puppy — most likely a lab fixed with a pointer.  (A “pointador!)  It wasn’t on their radar to get another dog, but they fell in love with this one and took her home.

For 3 weeks, I would see this sweet puppy in the mornings on her walk.  I kept thinking, “That is the sweetest dog ever!  If we get another dog, I want one just like her!”

One morning, out of the blue, my neighbor told me, “We’re thinking of giving her up.  Are you interested?”  Less than 24 hours later, she was ours. Sadly, this family adored her and she adored them.  It was simply too much work for them to add a second dog.  Generously, they brought over all her pillows, toys, food, and accessories.  This dog was well taken care of!  God is so good!

The kids all agreed on the name, “Boba.”  She has been with us 5 days, and we are madly in love.  Sometimes I forget she is a puppy…. she is that good!  I was worried about regretting it and not wanting a dog.  Instead, I’ve only grown more attached.  The cats are not super excited, but they’ll learn… I think Boba is more scared of them!

The kids couldn’t agree on who got to tell the big news, so we decided to post it here, first.  Surprise!!!  I’m sure you’ll be seeing more of her around this space soon.