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….


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!


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.

Snow Fun!

How has it been so long since I last blogged?  There have been lots of factors, including the fact that I have been lazy about bringing my camera places now that my husband has an i-phone.  Instead of going back, I thought I’d start from our most recent adventures.

This week, we took a couple days off school and headed for the snow to celebrate Valentine’s Day, (and my 44th birthday!)  When we arrived, we were greeted with lots of snow and the kids jumped right in…

Xavy loved “feeding” this squirrel snow.

You have a lovely heart, dear Allison!

Hot chocolate and marshmallows for the win, and then right back out!

These guys played in the yard, while Allison, Daniel, and Malachi went sledding.

Inside, we were cozy as could be.  Hide and seek, games galore, reading, and movies consumed our time.

The next morning, we awoke to rain that had been pouring all night.  Most of the snow was gone.  Yet, we were not sad about it one bit.  More games, more movies, and time to just hang as a family while the wind howled and the rain poured outside.  It was glorious.

The morning started with Daniel’s special Valentines for all the kids and me.  It is a favorite tradition for so many reasons.  Each card is specially picked for each kid, and every chocolate is gourmet.  Daniel, you spoil us!

These 2 brave boys wanted to go out in the storm, so… I let them!  And then, my picture taking ended.  Too much fun spending time with family and enjoying our day of “nothing.”  We attempted to go sledding the next day, but the snow was all iced over.  We’ll save that for another time.  For now, our adventure was family time!

Cookie Decorating

If you’ve read this blog for any time at all, you may have noticed we love cookie decorating.  I’ve found it’s an especially fun way to get to know new friends, as well as bond with old ones.  Valentine cookies are my favorite for two reasons: cinnamon hearts and strawberry frosting!

After a day of bonding with new friends for the kids, we hosted our small group and bonded with our old friends that evening.  I had just enough leftover frosting for some cupcakes.  If I ever dared to cut out sugar as a New Year’s resolution, it would all be over come Valentine’s Day!