Thursday, January 26, 2012


this winter has wild weather patterns. snowy one day, then rainy the next. therefore when there is snow on the ground, we better be participating in some wintertime activities. and sunday we did!

this pic stirs something in my heart about the man i married. perhaps it is his protective eye watching his boys proudly, maybe his stance, ready to equip those darlings for fun. oh, love!

inspired by the knowledge of another warm front coming sunday evening, we knew we had to take drastic action and fully enjoy the white stuff while it lasted. so, we went sledding at my grandparents house.

allow me to please better explain the hill down which we sent our precious and cherished children. this hill is huge. and steep. and ends in a creek. as a child, i took many risky rides down that hill and the adrenaline and fear came rushing back when we arrived on sunday. one particularly fateful day, my grandpa and dad went down together on a toboggan. this ended in my grandpa's glasses and face breaking. this is a serious hill.

baby blue remained on flat areas pulled slowly by her enthusiastic mama. cupcake is not in love with this adventure. but she looks good trying.

so, we had a small window of opportunity in which to take advantage of this amazing activity as ayla jo needs her naps and the rain was on its way. therefore, we left the house right about lunchtime and determined that we needed a little sustenance to provide the energy required for climbing back upt that monsterish hill. so we settled on burger king in the veen. gourmet. classy. that is just our style people.

after several sleds, we had some company. wild turkeys.

brad and max had front row seats to this cool spectacle. thanks for the cool surprise jesus!

so daunting was the hill, and the climb up, that we eventually resorted to sledding down the deck.

quite sure these two can make an adventure out of anything including sleds.

this was actually a super fun idea. brad and i had to stand guard at the bottom so as not to lose a child down the hill solo.

what a daddy, willing to make the ultimate sacrfice.

look at that face, bring it on.

ayla jo did not have the benefit of trompsing up and down that hill on her own. any movement at all in that snow required parental assistance. so i snuggled her in my sling and got a workout of a lifetime by hefting her to and fro. this is the point during which we knew we were done. still cute, just done.

what a memorable first downhill sledding experience for one and all! so grateful for the protection god blessed us with during this outing. my grandma admitted she was thankful to be in florida so as not to have to witness the shenanigans of the meiste sledding experience.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

enjoying the small things

sickness in our fam forces a major slow down.

though i hate that maxer's tummy was upset resulting in a restless and floppy 5 year old, i adore the opportunity to change pace to something allowing for true recognition of all the little lovelies that make up our days. yesterday, we certainly enjoyed the small things:

tea time

lets play this all day long please. (thats my request, not necessarily aylaroos. i cannot get enough of the darling pouring of tea)

tea for two with bear. my daughter now refers to her brother as bear bear. it is the cutest.

though it looks like baby blue is all about sipping tea ladylike from her cup, she is actually yelling into it and then giggling about the way her voice sounds.

notice the hair pretties i love them more than ayla jo does.

watching youtube videos.

stuck tractors are a favorite, look how involved those cutes are!

baking some sweet treats with my cupcake

the snow

bundling the cutest little snow bunny ever in preparation for this:

mule sledding

getting a good pic of this ordeal is quite complicated, even with the new christmas camera at my disposal. sitting on my knees on the back of the mule, trying to keep from shooting over the side of the thing, bracing myself against the jarring, and capturing the glee on the faces of my sons is to much for me to handle.

bradley and i are reading wild at heart together as our devotions. awesome book all about how god intentionally created men's souls to long for adventure and conquest. all my boys proved that theory to be absolutely true by participating heart and soul in our outdoor activity.

what better combination in winter than an atv with daddy behind the wheel and children strung behind?!

there were a few spills. we almost lost bear. well, we did lose bear, but stopped long enough for him to catch up. he is one wild child. totally worth waiting for ;)

even baby blue got in on the action with the assistance of her insanely long legged mom. seriously, i do not even know where to go with those things. clearly that is obvious from the pic.

the sunset

after all the crazy awesome tricks the boys impressed us with while mule sledding, god gave us the best show of all.

a beautiful gift given out of love. look at his splendor, its all over. in the sky, in these beautiful faces.

the nest.

the perfect ending to our day of chillaxin. babes and parents snuggled together amidst every sleeping bag and throw we can find. the boys actually spent the entire night here in this blanketed bliss.

Friday, January 20, 2012


wednesday, we escaped the winter blahs by heading to the grand rapids children museum to quell some of our many curiosities. the adventure was made even more beautiful as we experienced the craziness with 2.5 of our faves, the klein girls and baby boy to be who will be referred to as russell ronald until the day he is born. brad is the best at coming up with spectacular in utero names. maxer was baby desiree before he was born. we are so thankful he was a boy and bradley was not tempted to keep his stripper name. we were not the onlies with that grand idea. we were greeted with approximately 345 elementary school students and their teachers/parents. oh boy. our kids were not deterred. rather they dashed ahead scoping out each exhibit at warp speed.

the sandbox was a favorite, captivating everyone's attention for awhile. though i was somewhat confused as to why they were drawn to something they typically have access to at home, i enjoyed not chasing anyone and getting a sec to chat with jess. they probably are having sand withdrawal since a beautiful blanket of snow covers the sand these days.

with 1 live animal at a time rotating through a duck, chinchilla, and lizard. they also had a table containing some furs. my kids were not that impressed. they see more wildlife at home what with my faux fur cheetah scarf and harv running around.

we had similar response to the wackiness of wacky wednesday. on the whiteboard we passed walking into the museum was written "its wacky wednesday! try skipping instead of walking!" really? that is not that wacky people. i am quite certain however that we brought enough wacky with us to allow the day to live up to the name. i am not naming names or anything, but...

maxers favorite experience were the bubbles. huge people encompassing bubbles.

bear loved driving the car. this exhibit literally made my heart race as i said a silent prayer of protection when the day comes when bear can actually drive.

ayla jo was constantly entertained by it all. what a pleasure to witness her cute little mind taking it all in!

i personally enjoyed watching my boys take to chicken farming. bear was especially deft at pulling eggs from the chicken. he knows how to get this done!

this day was such a blessing. dedicated to the kids, my heart overflowed with joy getting to spend quality time with my faves. nothing else needed to be accomplished other than keeping track of the cuties. that was enough. no laundry needed to be folded or food made.

thank you to grandma jen for her generous gift of this day of fun and learning and mcdonalds.

thank you jess for sharing your friendship and daughter with her adoring fans.

thank you lord for a world designed by your creative hand.