Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Harp Concert and parctice

My beautiful girls at the harp concert. They were so pretty in their Christmas dresses!
Emma practicing (in her River Academy uniform) Silent Night under Jill Whitman's watchful eye. notice her intense concentration. :}
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Harp Harp Harp!!!

This Advent has been filled with much in the way of harp preparation. We have attended a beautiful harp concert at the Free Methodist church by the group Noel! and loved it. Emma and Mia who are taking the harp right now from Jill Whitman, were inspired and loved it as well. Little Mia was lulled to sleep during the last 2 songs, it was adorable. This week we have been to harp practice twice already and we are going again today. Emma is playing Silent Night for the River Academy Christmas program and when asked how she was doing yesterday she told a friend she was "a bit rusty". Which is really funny coming from her, a 7-year-old. Like the rest of us she gets lulled to sleep and entranced by the beauty of the harp's melody, unfortunately she still needs to play! I have a picture of her practicing that I am hoping to put up here, hopefully I'll get to it.

I am so happy that our children are taking music lessons. Music has been shown time and time again to encourage us and lighten our mood and even to give rest to weary souls. They love to sing, so the next step was playing. Nolen is taking guitar lessons and has come really far in the short time he has been playing. Scott always wished he would have been given the opportunity to take lessons, so when Nolen asked we jumped on it and called a friend to teach him.Even though we could have waited until he was older the times that he spends practicing and in lessons helps him so much. In his lessons he needs to be respectful and to learn to accept correction and to take easily the words, "No Nolen, you're wrong, you need to play this way instead." and to a 9 year old boy these are words he need to be comfortable with and not offended by. We wanted to choose something with the girls that they could use to both calm themselves and others, and use later on in their lives to make money and to glorify God. Here is the perfect option! They can play the Harp for weddings and events or for fundraising concerts for missionaries at a church. They are also falling in the above category as well for correction. WE are very blessed to have a world renowned harp teacher here that loves children and is patient with them as well.

Right now it's snowing like crazy, all of those little sticking flakes that cause all the trouble, but make everything look so beautiful and make the perfect snowballs. I heard that we are supposed to get between 5 and 7 inches today, yikes. I am not a very confident snow driver so that makes me very nervous. I did put Scott's 80lb punching bag in the back of the van to add weight, so hopefully that will help. Yes, the front tires are still touching the ground. Have a happy snowy day!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Now for something completely different

"Each day the number of requests we receive normally outnumber the time allotted for the day. My experience confirms that if I fail to attack my week with theologically informed planning, my week attacks me with an onslaught of the urgent. And I end up devoting more time to the urgent than the important.

And at the end of the week there is a low-grade guilt and dissatisfaction in my soul, because I’ve neglected to do the truly important stuff. I want to have as few weeks like this as possible in whatever time remains for me to serve the Savior. I’m thinking you do as well."
~ CJ Mahaney taken from his blog

This quote struck me particularly because of the directness of it. How much of your day is consumed with the urgent and not with what you sat down and specifically planned out to do and to accomplish for the day, week, year? Why? Why is it so hard to just say, "No, I can't do that I have only a short amount of time in my life and I have to devote it to the work that I have planned and prayed out to do." Why is that guilt even there? Planning is a crucial and vital part to our days. Scott and I have begun to realize how much more we get done, and how much more unified we are but just simply sitting down and planning out our days in the morning before the children get up and we are in the river again. It gives us the lifeline we need to get where we need to go and the map to get there quickly.

For the longest time I mocked and scoffed at the idea of a meal plan, especially those that spanned longer than a week at a time. I felt like they were compartmentalizing their time tooo much and not allowing for any creativity in the realm of cooking (which I love). Consequently my life was consumed in the evenings with what we were going to have for dinner and making sure I had on hand what I would need for any meal I felt the desire to create when the muse descended. This was making me crazy and grumpy and costing us more than the allotted food budget. So one day I decided to try a meal plan, and in my usual fashion I jumped in with both feet and made a 6-week meal plan. I have been so happy with the peace and ease it has given me. This area is now one that I consider a no-brainer, meal plans are definitely much easier. I have figured out meal plans around the rigors of mock trial season, Christmas, our Easter liturgy and our daily evening schedule. It has also saved us vast amounts of money on food and almost eliminated our food waste. I have been able to give my family a more well balanced diet and consequently my hubby who was on the verge of teetering off the high end of the Triglyceride and cholesterol scale is now on the low end of normal and doing great. My point is that even in this small area God is blessing me richly by my planning and prayer and I know that He intends greater blessings to come.

During the Christmas season and specifically this time of Advent leading up to Christmas when we are all doing our shopping for Christmas presents how could this not be more relevant? What are you buying for your children and why? Have you been sucked in to buy that *new* great thing that you saw at Target thinking they would just LOVE it? Or did you sit down with you hubby and DECIDE what to buy before you even set out? Will you tree be chocked full with a bunch of little gifts that you hope they like and will use for longer than a week, or did you consider them and what one thing they will truly use and love and remember? Were you struck with the urgent desire to buy that great thing that you saw that will just end up as next summer's garage sale fodder? I remember a few years back those ugly Furby's, now honestly. What about the Tickle Me Elmo? Who really bought that because they saw the joy and peace it would bring to the aroma of their home? This is a case of being sucked in to the fads of the day and not planning.

The day is only 24 hours long, and the week 7 days, and the month around 30, and the year a mere 365 days. Yet, each one of us has a task to complete within that time span. Not all of the request on our time are for us. Every day I am asked to do numerous things that are all good and wonderful, but that doesn't mean that I should do all of them. There are things that I just do not need to accomplish. There are so many patients and only so many doctors. Should they feel guilty because they can't possibly see them all? No, that would be foolish and a waste of time. They should be thankful for the ones that are brought to them and work hard to help them completely. There are so many great books and yet impossible to read them all. Should we give up? NO! Read away! But that is why we need to prayerfully consider and plan our days out and not get swept away and waste the life that God has given us. We have many opportunities here to do and to learn many things to teach our children and to provided for others to teach them. I have an aunt that had 5 boys. Each of them was athletic. None of them are professional athletes, but all are hard workers and have accomplished a lot (even though the oldest one is a youngish 32). My aunt and uncle saw that sports would help them teach diligence and hard work, their goal was not to raise a football star or another Michael Phelps. The sports were tools and decisions to put them in were made after debating their usefulness to the larger goal at hand.

My hubby and I always shake out heads when we hear someone say that one of their children was an accident. How could that happen? Are they so completely unaware of the cause of pregnancy? No, they are living a live completely unplanned and unthoughtout, and because of their lifestyle they have once again been caught staring into the headlights of their life, coming at them like a semi.

Make prayerful decisions and do not be swept away with wasted days filled with the urgent. Enjoy your life and bless those around you. Make schedules and plans, but use them as your tools, do not be brought under their weight and domination. They are your servants you are not theirs. You are Christ's and His burden is LIGHT. Now go do the important things and go to sleep tonight satisfied in your soul and not feeling guilty in the slightest.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Advent readings etc. . . .

WEll, our Advent readings are going along really well, and we are enjoying our Christmas season. Scott and I got the spontaneous opportunity to go out on a date during the week, which was fun. WE went to the Applewood grill, our new favorite. Scott just likes it for the ribs and the 'knuckle dragger' beer, I just love it. I like the variety on the menu and the festive atmosphere and the fun drinks. Thus it is the perfect place for us on a date. Our tree is up and decorated and yesterday we made cookies (snikerdoodles) and white chocolate drizzled oranges. Both were a big hit. The children were asking for them for breakfast, I guess they were the first things on their minds this morning.
Today the girls have choir practice and it's also the day we pick up the McEachran boys, all of it happen's during the dinner rush. I have dubbed Tuesdays as our Crock pot day. We have had many different things from soups and stews to roasts and salsa chicken, but today is a meatball day. It's funny how the easiest things are sure to thrill the whole family.
Oh, I forgot to mention! Yesterday I knitted a hat! Ahhhh. But, more on that later. Have a great day!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I love this photo!!

This is such a great photo from our Poulsbo adventures at the beginning of the summer. How many people have a picture of their kiddos hugging a genuine Viking? I'd like to say, . . . not many. I love my little Norski kids!
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Wednesday, December 3, 2008


What do you all think of the new layout? Let me know!!!

Advent day 3

Today we read John 1:18
No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him.

Here is the link to our Advent readings go to the bottom of the page and just click on Advent readings.

For our family time we all grabbed a mug of hot cocoa and our grandma blankets and snuggled up while Scott read from the Hobbit. I love it. Happy Day 3 everyone!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Advent day 2

Today we started out the morning with our pancakes on the fine China and sipped our orange juice out of wine glasses. Our children ran down to the table to the sight of small beautiful packages awaiting them. We read some scripture and talked about why we celebrate a physical Christmas and not and ethereal one. Why are we inundated with chocolate and lights and good food and friends and SINGING?!?!?! Because with out a physical birth of a savior and a physical death for sin we would all be without cause to rejoice. Praise God! So for our Advent treat we decorated out kiddo's rooms with the Christmas music a-blaring.

Advent Day 1

On day one we kind-of cheated. We kicked off our Sabbath day with a major bang and went out to Applebees with my mother-in-law. The children all had so much fun and it really started us out on the right foot. PLUS we usually have a big feast on the Sabbath and with the !st day of advent on it's heels we had to make it Extra big. On Sunday we started our day off with our Advent reading and a big breakfast and then had a great day with grandma doing fun stuff with her. It has been so nice to have her with us!!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Our week in review

Well the pre-Thanksgiving weekend started out great with hubby and kiddo's getting out of school for the week, and my amazing mother-in-law arriving for a fun and relaxing week before Thanksgiving. We had all sorts of great things planned and were hoping to really spoil her and fill her tank for the return to Florida. Friday was the big feast day at the River and an assembly and the children ALL loved having grandma there with them to celebrate. Then mom and I went to a Pampered chef party for some adult time and had a lot of fun. Well, then things began to unravel. That morning, EARLY Saturday morning Nolen began throwing up, then Nadia then Mia, Emma, Scott, and Sharon. It was miserable. On Sunday night I slept in my clothes with just a light blanket on and my glasses on ready to jump up. I was up numerous times helping my poor family and running them back and forth to the bathroom, changing them and their bedding and being on guard as to not miss something really bad. Nolen was better and I thought Ty and Nadia were fine so we went for a walk with the dog at the park, all went well so instead of going in and exposing ourselves to the stomach flu we went to the store to pick up some rations. Well as soon as we got to the car Ty started throwing up. And when we got home I gave Nadia something to drink and she started throwing up again! Yowza! It was crazy around here for a couple of days. I never got whatever it was, thankfully. We are still dealing with some sort of head cold, but other than that all is well.
Thanksgiving day was a low key and relaxing day as we were all exhausted, but pretty well recovered. Scott grilled salmon and asparagus, I made a feta and blueberry salad, mashed Parmesan red potatoes and baked apples and Nolen made the Challah and we spent dessert with our dear friends the Bowes! It was really nice especially because I LOVE my hubby's grilled salmon!!! Any day with that is a good day. At dinner we talked about all of the things we were thankful for. Well, we had told the children that we were going to do this and we wanted it to be a well spring rather than a kinked garden hose, so we asked them to make lists earlier in the day of about 10 things they were thankful for. Well, Nolen made his list and then memorized it as not to have to worry about all of that pesky paper (very Nolen), Emma wrote out 10 (in about 30 different colors along with illustrations) and then ran down the stairs upset because she had way more than 10 and was asking if it was OK for her to "do more" . Then after she finished she decided to put it to music and sing it. Then she sat down to play a harp accompaniment to it (VERY Emma). Mia worked sooo hard and actually wrote out her's!!! She is only 5 so this took her awhile, but she pressed forward and and did it (very Mia). Ty chimed in at dinner that he was very thankful for Jesus dying on the cross and sharks and fishies. Nadia spoke up with her ever present, "Yea!", which is sooo cute by the way.
I hope you all had a great day and enjoyed your family and friends!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Great Family photo's

I am finally including the link to our family photo's that were taken by Joy Far earlier this fall. she did an amazing job and we were so happy with them! Check them out!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Retro Christmas

I wanted to find some more authentically Americana pieces for Christmas. And this is what I found! I love it. For those of you who know me, there are even stains from Family Christmases past on the table cloth!! I can envision many-a happy Christmas dinner past around my pretty tablecloth. I can't wait to add our own gravy and coffee and wine stains to it -OH marvelous!! And to my dear friend michelle - - RED BALL FRINGE!!!! Ahhhhhh . . . .
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Ty's comfort

Yesterday I was putting Nadia on the potty, and as I set her on she began to cry (I think it was cold). Well as soon as this happened Ty knew what the problem was and how to help, what a good brother. He said in a rather comforting tone, "Don't worry baby Nadia, the sharks won't jump up and bite your bun!". What a great friend. This is a great picture of family :)

cinnamon rolls

Here is a pic of what the cinnamon rolls looked like. NUMMMMM . . . I need to make some more!
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My Buddy

Last week we had a minor catastrophe that could easily have become a MAJOR Problem. Our washing machine spontaneously ejected a vital part and started gushing water. So here I am with 5 small children and no washing machine. I called SEARS to get a repair man to come out to fix the problem and encountered any number of issues with the whole procedure (don't even get me started on the huge problem of outsourcing customer-service jobs to other countries, and the language barrier, ergh). The earliest they could get someone out was a week and a half later - Yikes. Now, I usually do at least 3 loads a day. As I began to do the math I was getting a bit disheartened. 21 loads of laundry was more than I could handle, not to mention the at that point I would be buying new underwear by the boatloads to keep up. The last time I had a washer issue and had to go to the laundromat it took 10 washers and 10 dryers and $40. Not to mention that Emma was sick (throwing up of-course) and I had to manage to keep Ty safe and Nadia contained during that whole process. Though edifying, I'm sure - not my idea of a relaxing afternoon. Well in the mean time hubby needed white tee shirts so a load needed to be done somehow. Well after acessing the situation and reviewing all of the possible alternatives I decided to just bite the bullet and wash a load, gushing water and all. At first I planned on just having Ty watch a movie or play so that I could focus on keeping the water off of the carpet and keep potential disaster to a minimum. I had it all figured out. I would start the washer and when I saw the water begin to gush I would just open the door to the back yard and sweep the water out (feverishly). Well when Ty saw this (water on the floor and mother poised with broom) he wanted to join in! So we had a great time together as he learned to work alongside me (with his own broom, seen here) and instead of being in the way and making a bigger mess he was a BIG help and now I have the cleanest basement floor ever!! Later my hubby called and managed to get us on some sort of waiting list to be called by ... someone. The next day the head honcho of the service department in Spokane called and the repairman came out the following day. Well, to me the problem was really cut and dry. The spring that holds the boot taught against the drum came out (along with the screw that tightens it) so the way to fix it would be to put it back in, right? Well, apparently the obvious solution to the repairman had to do with ordering a part and something about hell on earth and it being back ordered. Yowza... I stood silently trying not to take him by the cheeks and scream, "Listen, if 2 parts came out of the washer and those 2 parts are in good working order, then doesn't it make complete sense to you that the best idea would be to simply put them in and not worry about another mysterious part that does not exist!?!!?" BUT, alas.... Instead I simply said, "Well, see what you can do." I then went upstairs to pray like mad. After awhile I was either needing to go hover over him and watch his every move to make sure he was actually doing all he could to put it back together or something else - on the constructive and less annoying side. So I made cinnamon rolls. They were very distracting and they turned out great. The repairman had to take the entire front off of the washer, I just didn't go down. But he got it all together and it now works wonderfully, no leaks!
So when hubby came home this is the picture he saw. Happy wife with a fixed washing machine, warm smells of delicious cinnamon rolls wafting through the house and CLEAN white tee's for work, not to mention the impeccably clean laundry room floor! From his perspective a great day had by all. Life is funny. God is good.
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Friday, November 14, 2008

Thankfulness Catch up :)

Alright, here goes
#7 my parents!! They are the greatest, and I am so thankful for all of the wise and practical advice they give. I look around my home and at my children and cannot see more that a square inch that does not have their fingerprint on it. From the Groovy Girl clothes, our slippers, hats scarves, dresses, etc . . . knitted by my mom to the tools and weedeaters filling our garage and sheds to overflowing. We are very blessed by their help and love

#8 my sister!!! She is always thinking of us! I'm not sure if we have made it into her book yet (hint!hint!) and by the way I would really like to see that - how hilarious. She is fun and funny and not bound by her limitations - BUT DO NOT OFFER TO ORDER HER A FRAPPACCINO (sp)!! I once did and had to walk off the laughter at what she asked me to order, I almost couldn't say it! My kiddo's are so kind and generous to anyone disabled, thanks to her. They have gone up and requested rides on peoples wheelchairs, though so I guess there are things to watch out for. Too comfortable and all.

#9 My mother-in-law! How funny is that? Do people actually say that? I personally love my mother-in-law. She is kind, generous, loving and fun. She LOVES her grandkids and just thrives on their antics. Whenever I tell her the latest daring-do by Sir Titus she is so good at putting it all into perspective, and reminding me that Scott was just like that and now look at him!! I usually leave our conversations with a smile on my face and a deeper love for my family.

#10 The River Academy, yes one of my favorite places on earth. I love to hear that loud rambunctious chanting of Bible verses echoing through that halls, to see Nolen and his friends running at breakneck speed out to the playground to play football or some other high intensity rule related game (Nolen is our rule-monger) with huge smiles on their faces. I love to see Emma and her friends going from room to room after school asking to help the teachers clean up their rooms, sharpen pencils and whatever else needs to be done. I love to see Mia bounding out of class to see me and give me a HUGE hug and to tell me she misses me after only a mere 3 hours away. I love to be in a place where my husband is respected for who he is, what he contributes and thanked daily for what he sacrifices to be there. The BEST thing about The River is that God is glorified and Christ is put first. The same teachers that have fun with the students are also not afraid to hold them accountable and to talk to them about what really matters. School is merely a training ground for the Christ centered life. And, yes a happy place for my hubby to be the all time quarterback at recess.

#11 Flu shots and our amazing access to medical care here in the US. A couple years ago Scott got the flu. Not Gastroenteritis but the real genuine flu. He almost died. It was extremely scary for me, the children were all to small to realize what happened, but with him in the hospital and losing weight daily I felt the full weight of a life with out my best friend. Everyone that came in contact with him had to wear a mask and couldn't touch his skin without gloves. I couldn't even sleep in the same bed with him for a week afterwards. When he was finally released I was left with a husband that weighed nearly 30 pounds less than he did when he went in, not a good weight loss regime. Ever since then we have all got the flu vaccine. If it protects us from the current strain, great -wonderful!!! If not, at least it gives our bodies another shot at learning to fight off a nasty bug. And it gives us a peace of mind that is worth more than the co-pay.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Happy birthday to Scott!!

Here is the hilarious picture of Scott and his 5 beautiful children (if I do say so myself) at Applebee's for his birthday. I was really there, but as happens with most mom's, sorry no pictures.
We had a great time and laughed a lot. The children consider Scott's birthday as one of the MAJOR holidays during the year and can't understand why noone else was hoopin' it up!! We started out the exciting evening with flu shots all around and so after school was a mad dash for Dr. Kolde's office to Dr. Milnes office to dinner before it was so late the children were starving. We immediately started dishing out the cherrios (that were orriginally intended for Nadia) and instructed coloring. It all went smoothly and they were soooo GOOD!!! We expect it, but you really never know when you have the little ones in the mix.
I am sooo thankful for this man! Can I say it enough?Not only is he handsome, but he loves me, works hard, can't wait to come home, and not only teaches but loves the kiddo's. Oh, and he cleans up the vomit when the kids get sick. The last one is really important, since I cannot do it with out getting sick too and being out of commission for the rest of the day. It is definately a divinely appointed task.
So Cheers for the day, and we hope your was as fun!
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Thursday, November 6, 2008

Thankfulness #6

The Tolerance Rant. I LOVE it. This is the most hilarious and true thing on the planet. If you haven't seen it, go there.

Thankfulness #5

Now anyone who know me knows that I hate the rain. I am not talking from a mere single experience in it or seeing it from far away and saying, "ewww", I have been living in Washington state my whole life, and specifically on the peninsula for my first 20 years of life and can say with expert knowledge of the subject at hand and all of it's facets that I hate the rain. BUT!!! Today when we saw that it was raining I put the girls in these ADORABLE rain jackets and look what they did! My little Wenatchee girls are trying to catch raindrops on their tongues! I can now say with a heart full of joy that today I am thankful for the rain! Who wouldn't be with such cuteness as the end result?
Did I mention the part about their hoods? They are definately the cutest girls alive. Confirmed.
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Shower pics

Can you believe they all fit!? amazing. This is definately something to be thankful for, such good friends.
Sue, Michelle and Baby Chelsey.
Bethany, Chelsey and Michelle
What a great sister pic.
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Thankfulness #4

For my dear friends Rachel and Michelle.
We had a shower for Michelle and dear little Chelsey Fay here on Monday and the morning before the shower I had no idea how it would all pull together. Rachel wizzed over here and helped me (or rather I helped HER) get my house up to par and ready for all of the ladies who would come that evening. It was so fun and we had a great time. The shower was so lovely and a good time was had by all. Such fun.

Thankfulness #3

For the place we are. I love to look out my window and see the park in all of it's fall glory. The leaves are changing and fallllllling, so quickly that you can literally stop and watch a tree go from a full tree of beautiful golden splendor to a bare stick poking out of the ground and pleading with heaven to take it from it's bare misery. Ahhhhh...
I love to see my children playing in the Spring on the play ground and in the Summer in their swimsuits splashing in the puddles left by the sprinklers and in the Fall jumping in the piles of leaves and sledding down the trails in the Winter. Wonderful.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Thankfulness #2

OK, here is the 2nd thing I am thankful for.
#2 Daylight savings time!!! Who is not thankful for more sleep and actually waking up to light rather than darkness?

Saturday, November 1, 2008


There are soo many things to be thankful for, during this time of the year, and especially in the country we are in. I am going to try and post at least one thing that I am thankful for each day for the entire month. I must admit that I am hoping to post MORE than one each day, but if I can say that I am going to post one then all others should be gravy, right?

#1 (drum roll please . . . ) My children and Hubby!!
They are the reason my house is at the same time messy, but fully of laughter and life. With out them life around here would be neat, tidy, dull, and depressing.

There you go, easy as pie! Now I would love to hear what everyone else is thankful for, so chime in!! Hope you have a great day!!

Vive Le Reformation!!

Here are our 2008 Reformation day pictures. Nolen, Emma, Mia and Scott dressed up in full reformation garb and had a wonderful time. Scott was a scholar (how he pulled this off I have no idea), Nolen was a handsome and brave knight seen below with crest, Emma and Mia were beautiful princesses. They ate a huge feast, jousted, played games and learned about the reformation. It was a funn day and they came home exhausted.

Sir Nolen

Scott, Nadia and Ty at the assembly
Emma and Mia best princess sister friends!!!
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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A Little Welch update is good for everybody

Well, since it was indeed quite some time since I update you all on how we are doing I thought you night like some cute August/September photos. Here is Mr. Titus at his 3rd birthday. Complete with swimming trunks and orange Dorito coating.

Here are Nolen Emma, Mia and Scott on their first day of school 2008. Don't they look nice? Did I mention how much I love those uniforms?

Sweet Nadia the morning of her 1st birthday enjoying her first ever birthday donut. I think she ate the filling first. That stuff was even up her nose.

And here is Emma with Mrs. Whitman giving a harp demonstration for Mia's class. Don't they look happy? The harp is such a beautiful instrament.
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Monday, October 27, 2008

to funny to miss

Alright, I found this site while I was blog hopping during my 5 minutes on the computer this afternoon, and I had to put it up for all to see. I know I have had things of this strain happen to me before and you have, too, so I thought a good laugh was in order.

Several years ago, we bought a new house. It is a nice house, and I was a little over-eager to show it off. We were having company over one evening, and I had spent most of the day throwing clutter into the back of closets, hanging "skinny" pictures in strategic places, and making sure the bed linens were crisp. I was flittering around the house, one room to the next, preparing my "image."

Abby and Ellie, sensing my eagerness, decided that they wanted to help me "decorate." They were 3 at the time, and while their intentions were good, they were really more in the way than they were helpful, so I shuffled them into a little space off of my bedroom that I use as a craft closet and I told them to work on it. They were so content to have this little space to design, and I needed to fluff things. It sounded like a good plan.

I checked in on them every few minutes, but as it started getting closer to "company" time, I had to go put on my makeup, so I slipped into the bathroom in search of the right lipstick to impress the guests.

I will look like I have it all together tonight, that's for sure.

They weren't really close friends, so there was a chance I could pull it off.

And they were going to love my style (and, in turn, love me! Isn't that the way the world works?)

Ellie comes and stands beside me, trying to get my attention.

"We made it pwetty, momma."

"Mmm-hmm. I bet you did!" I am nodding like I am listening, but I'm distracted by my own reflection.

"I can't wait to see it." Now for eyeliner.

"We did the stickers." Ellie is smiling. She is really proud of herself.

"Oh, how great! Where's Abbby?"

"She's workin' on it. Wanna see?"

"Oh, baby, I can't. I need to get ready, but thanks so much for your help."

"You don't wanna see it, momma? We were workin' on it. It's so pwetty"

"OK, honey, I'll come see it soon." I dart into the closet and leave her standing there alone in the bathroom. I get dressed and brush past her again.

They kept chasing me around the house while I lit candles and vacuumed. They just wanted my attention, but I had a one track mind. They were so proud of their work and all they wanted was to show it to me, and I was too busy to care. Too wrapped up in myself and my stupid house to listen. Well, God was about to have the last laugh.

I am taking the guests around the house and showing them the layout, kicking any semblance of normalcy under the bed, telling about this and that and who knows what else. The girls are dancing one step behind me because they know that the last stop on the grand tour is the master bedroom and I am going to show off their contribution.

I get to the little door and say something like, "And this is what I use as a craft room...." and before I can finish my sentence, I look into the room.

"We did the stickers, momma!!!" They are dancing around and clapping because they are so deliriously excited that they have thought to decorate with stickers, and the stickers are everywhere.

Only, they aren't "stickers" in the traditional sense.

They are maxi-pads.

And they are everywhere.

They are hanging from the bookshelf, from the windowsill, from my fabric, from my desk. It is a maxi-pad party and it is happening. To me.

That sticky side is no mess, people, because they are hovering from angles previously unattempted by personal products.

And I literally start laughing so hard that my children think it is a response to their genius decorating, and they are laughing and pointing and we all just fall on the ground, because really, what else can you do? You have the perfect blouse, the ideal neighbors, the gold record on the wall.....and NONE of it matters. It is completely negated by the fact that this door just opened and your whole life, your real life, the ugly side of life, just fell out and smacked you on the head.

He had to smack me on the head.

If you have been to my house since the maxi-party of '05, you will probably notice that I am more laid back with my entertaining style.

And I am thinking of adding an interior design course for the little ladies. You know I'm not one to miss a learning opportunity...

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sweet Mia day of surgery

Here is my sweet girl the morning that she had her tonsils and adenoids out. She was such a trooper before, during and after the whole thing. Our older two were in school all day and our younger two were with the amazing Kayli all day so we got to just spend our time focusing on Miss Mia and her recovery. Everyone has been so sweet to her and she is really eating it up. This weekend has been a good one that has forced us to be at home and together, our favorite place to be.
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What makes life funner with kids

As Christians there are some things that are just no brainers. Bible reading being one of those. There are those of us who picture this as a quiet time in the morning with a steaming hot cup of coffee in our hands while sitting in a comfy recliner. BUT, life is sometimes funner with KIDS!!!! Tonight we had the BEST time that I have ever had while reading the Bible, and I think it just became a Welch family tradition. We acted out the verses we were reading, complete with Titus acting as Moses rod (both before and after it turned into a snake) and all of the rest of us acting as dead fish, boils and the rest of the plagues of Egypt. It was completely hilarious!! After Titus ate the snakey rods of the false prophets (the acting here was amazing people, you would have thought he was actually EATING the snakes!!) we stuffed his jammie top with a pillow and he rubbed his bulging belly. We almost died laughing. Oh, God is good! Everyone walked away happy and thrilled to be a part of our wonderful family (yes, even little Nadia).

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Awash in activity

Well life is just buzzing along over here in Hedge Parke. I have been waiting for a break in activity
(and a free computer) to update my BLOG and since neither looks promising I will just go ahead any way.
We have been enjoying Nolen's first football season for almost 2 months and now we are about to go to the last game of the season. Saturday is the big game, and his coach has set up a night game under the lights at the high school field. He is going to be sad to see it go and we will miss the great influences of coach Tim and coach Gus on our dear Nolen.
Emma was home sick today and when she wasn't sleeping or resting on the couch she was perched at the table with a pair of scissors in front of the huge stack of colored paper I got at Costco yesterday. She was trying to convey the joy found in a huge stack of colored paper (and from Costco none the less) to Titus, but he was hung up on the glories of the jumbo glus stick she was using. Miss Emma is the most creative and crafty one in the house. She is als a wizz at finding anything lost. I am amazed when she so easily finds things of Scott's that have been lost forever. How does she do it??
Mia is going to be having her tonsils out of Friday and as easy as that sounds there are about a million things that have to go RIGHT for that to run smoothly. Fortunately all of the details are getting worked out.
We were just surprised by a weekend visit from my parents and sister and had a great time. They are so fun to be with and after my mom comes out I always feel energized and ready to tackle it all again. She is so good at putting it all back into a managable perspective. Somehow she manages to herd all of the cats. We went through and tried to figure out the rhyme and reason that is out life here at Hedge Parke and it all went so well. Did I mention I have an amazing MOM!?

Sunday, August 10, 2008

The final exit 2008

Here is our family leaving Blueberry hill in the wagons that they provide for plant transportation.
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Blueberry Hill 2008

Every year for the past 3 the Welch Clan has piled into the car to ride the momentous distance from the southern tip of East Wenatchee to the northern tip of Wenatchee to Blueberry Hill. This is a trip we look forward to every year. Our whole family eats (at least) our weight in blueberries adn each of us picks a pint to take home for the winter. Here is what we look like in the process. Nolen and Emma with cheaks bursting!

Titus savoring the long awaited berries.

Mia sitting comfortably underneath a blueberry bush picking it bare. Ahhh . . . but it does signal the end of summer.
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Friday, August 8, 2008

Carrying our crosses

Christ calls us, as Christians to carry our crosses every day and follow Him. Now at Hedge Parke we do not always take such passages SOOO literally, but in this case we did. Mia, Nolen and Emma are here with their crosses, built and ready for the walk.

Here they are placing them on their shoulders ready for the trek up to the designated cross placement area.

They carried them to the back of the yard for the *new* grape arbor.
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Best Friends

Our girls recently had a friend spend the night and they had so much fun with her. Why did I not get their hair cut sooner?! Summer is sweet here at the Welch house!
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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Emma's birthday at the Zoo

Here is my sweet brood at the Zoo for Emma's birthday. We had soo much fun!
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Mia's 5th birthday party

Mia, Me and Scott at Mia's 5th birthday party.

Here are some of the 43,000 people that attended the Mariners game in Mia's honor. We all had a great time, although our team lost. We love that girl!
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