Tuesday, January 5, 2016

this little light of mine.

this little light of mine.
has always been one of my favorite songs.
but this one.
THIS one.
is the  best.

sit down.
and listen to the words.

can there be any better theme song for one's life?

i have been doing a lot of reflecting as we have closed out 2015
and ushered in 2016.

as another year draws to a close,
and a new one  births,
i am drawn to sit. be quiet.
am i on track?
with God. with life. with my health. with relationships.
with responsibilities. with goals. 
the list continues.

i look at the things my hand touches and think again.
is THIS what God WANTS me to do?
am i giving this my ALL?

2016 brings fresh hope.
fresh dreams and opportunities.

John 1:4-5.
"in HIM was Life, and the Life was the LIGHT of men.
the LIGHT SHINES in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it."

so what do you dream in 2016?
the word i chose for myself this year is:

life is moving so fast.
i got teary looking at pictures this morning with Karolina.
my babies. growing up so fast.
am i making the most of this time?
am i making the most of being their mama?

i don't know.
real life happens in the midst of my dreams and hopes.
i get tired. i get cranky.
that is just being realistic.

but looking at 
by my kitchen sink
has helped me to do just that this January.

and the rest of my goals this year?
well. i am going to finally read the Bible thru this year.
several failed attempts are rediculous and embarrassing.
so this is MY year. to finish.
to read cover to cover. 

and then there is rising early.
before my family.
with my coffee. and Bible and journal.
i am hoping to journal again.
after about a 5 year hiatus. :/
and blog too.
MUST take the time...because they are so fun to read later on.

get my health in order.
i am tired of thinking about losing weight and getting healthy.
it will happen this year.
ya know. i turn 38 soon.
like in 8 days.

those 2 goals i have broken down into a million other ones.
so that is all i am going to focus on this year.
two BIG things.


how about you?

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

I'm BACK!!

I'm BACK!!!

I know. I know. 
It's been WAY too long.
I am taking some time today to catch up on a few things around the house...
and that means the BLOG too.


Most of you know that I grew up on a dairy farm.
Which meant not a lot of family vacations.
It was just too costly to get away. 
And trusting someone else with your cows and paycheck...
is the risk a normal 9-5 pm job does not understand. :)
then add in the Pastor position my dad had, and well...what time?
pastors have a lot of job duties. and mix that with farming.
my parents were B.U.S.Y.

We did take some weekend beach vacations, which were always a highlight!!
My memories of those include:
staying in a motel...with adjoining rooms.
eating lunch on the beach, complete with capri sun juice boxes.
dad making "drippy sand castles" with us while mom basked in the sun. :)
(i have NO memories of my mom in the water...which is kinda funny...because my kids
will have NO memories of me in the ocean either. :))
dad taking us back to the room early to shower and watch t.v.
giving mom the allotted time on the beach...which was usually until 5 or 6 pm...
(and AGAIN...this is ME today, when I go to the beach...I like to stay out on the beach pretty late.)

ANYWAY...all this to say...I have great memories of the vacations we took growing up.
I feel like being chicken farmers is WAY easier then dairy farmers...
but sometimes i feel bad because we don't get to take a lot of  "vacations" either.
and by vacations i mean pack up and go to disney world,
like many families do.
(insert I have still NEVER been to disney world, or disney land).
chicken farming does not allow for long breaks or advanced scheduling, 
which can be very frustrating at times...

but what i have to remember is that i have great memories from growing up on a farm.
and  great memories from the short, but sweet, vacations that we did take.
and i am sure my kids will too.
long vacations or not.
we have plenty of family time. 
and try to make quick trips to the King cabin and the beach when we can.

all that to say once we moved off the farm
(my senior year in high school)
my parents started taking us on WEEK LONG vacations to the beach.

insert SO.MUCH.FUN.

just kept getting crazier and crazier as we got married.
and had children of our own.

as you can imagine. scheduling has now become an issue.
not just for the siblings and my parents.
but for our kids now too.
everyone is in sports. and now college. and it's just crazy.
so....the weeklong vacations have now ended.

which is sad.SAD.sad.

but...this past fall we got a house at Angola by the Bay for an extended weekend in September.
here are some pics my brother, Mark, took of our time together.

(you can find his work/information at: www.hingework.com)

My parents, with their 18 grandchildren.  :))

A great picture of my blessed parents, Richard and Debbie.

These peeps I am blessed with!!

And one more.
Kaden- 12, Kaycee-10, Campbell-8, Calli-7 and Karolina-4.

it was fun to be together again.
an extended weekend was the perfect time together.
it can always get a little tricky.
we are all kind of different in our marriages, raising our kids, even dealing with meal times and bed times.
it can stress the grandparents out. :))

so an extended weekend felt perfect.
especially since we had PERFECT weather.
Thank you Jesus!!

looking forward to next year already.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Back in Session.

School is Back in Session.

I will be the first to tell you, that it takes me, every BIT as long as the kids, to get back into a groove.
I cannot tell you the amount of paperwork I have filled out in the first 2 days  back.

I know. I know.
I chose to have FIVE kids.
I did. I get it.
Why can't an emergency form be the same for all four of them?
Why do I have to manually fill out the same thing x4? When it goes right into a computer anyway?

Talk about frustrating.
I know I stay at home. But this lady has got LOTS better to do, then be filling out duplicate forms, people. :)

We didn't start school until August 31st...which was actually a week later, then most Lancaster county schools in our area. (Chester county schools started later...not sure why?) LOVED partying one week longer than our friends. { However, this will come back to bite us, when they are out a week before us this summer. :)  }

So...here are those first day pictures.

2015-2016 school year. Here we come.

Kaden- 6th grade.

Kaycee- 5th grade.

Campbell- 3rd grade

Calli- 1st grade

Has her first day of preschool next week. I will post a pic then. :)) ]

Here is the happy little bunch. PLUS Ava.
She is a friend of Kaycee's that we watch each morning before school.
Please excuse Campbell.
She had just gotton bonked in the head, via Kaden and his metal lunchbox.
There were tears.

There is so much more I could say.
The first day of school is always hard for me.
I always cry.
Usually just in the car, after the last one climbs out.

It's not because I miss them.
The quiet is super nice.
I can clean up the kitchen. And it will stay clean until they return home.
whoop. whoop. :)

It's more because it's a big, scary world out there.
Even in school.
And I am not there.
To interject.
Or explain it another way.
Or tell them to say please and thank you.
Or nudge them in the shoulder to smile.
Or to remind them to chew with their mouth closed.
I am not there to watch over them.
And someone else is.
They are spending more time at school, then at home with me.
And that always pierces my heart.

NOT because I want them home with me.
I know we are called to the public school system.
Just because we are called there, does not always mean it's easy.
Just another part of letting go,
I suppose.

It was a really great first week of school.
Nice to have a holiday weekend though. :)
More partying to be done before Tuesday comes.

and then.
Karolina goes to preschool.

THAT will be super strange.
No children.
be still my heart.

Someone throw me a baby to snuggle.  :))

Happy weekend friends.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

a little bit of summer randomness.

this post is going to be random.
your fair warning. :))
i have a lot of ground to cover.


these people of mine. 
life is crazy.
how do people get thru life without the love and support of "their people"?
without knowing and feeling the love of their Father?
trying to fit in cousin sleepovers before my oldest nephew moves off to college?
 i changed his diapers and babysat him when I was in college.
eeeeekkkk. :/

these people of mine.
they just keep growing.
for a blink of an eye their ages are really easy to keep track of.
kaden-12, kaycee-10, campbell-8, calli-6 and karolina-4.
i love them like wild.
in the hard. yelly. disobedient. mouthy. touching each other moments.
i figure i will forget these times.
i am pretty sure my mom has. :)
and then i will remember all the times they want to snuggle.
or have me read to them. or turn on their kindles :)
or "be the grandma" in playing house.
or give me hugs and kisses 3x in a row. at an already late bedtime.

i am trying to blaze all THESE times in my head to get me thru the hard times.
that are coming.

the summer is flying by. 
i LOVE summer. always have.
fitting in bike rides and sleep overs.
swimming in ponds, lakes and swimming pools of nice friends who invite us over. :))
sometimes it's nice to swim without the frogs. :)
ice cream, cookouts, baseball, 4H pigs, camping trips,
days at the beach, summer camp, 4 wheeler and dirt bike riding,
missing Anna- our puppy moments, but still loving Millie.
movie nights, reading, sleeping in, unloading hay, yard saling,
boat riding, tubing, laughing, and some crying too.
summer. you have been good to us.

Campbell, Karolina and Kaycee in above mentioned pond, with the frogs. :)

My baby, Karolina, turned 4 this summer.
she was REALLY hoping for a pony.
so we had lots of pony themed things going on. 
maybe next year. :))

This was a pony necklace I made for karolina.
she pretty much loved it. :)

i must say it's kinda fun working with my kids now.
just makes it a little more tolerable. 
haaaa. :))
kaden is really turning a corner now.
he is really able to help out on the farm, in a much bigger way, which is awesome.
money is really, really motivating to him. :))
he moves with a little more intention when money is involved.
but who doesn't? :))

the kids and i got to visit a church member's lake house one saturday.
it was super sweet of them to invite us, and we had a ton of fun.
they had more "toys" then we have ever seen before.
{ my mom won't believe that because she says WE have a lot of toys...but really, mom, it was crazy }


how many people can you fit on a tube anyway?

well...there is a fleeting snippet of our summer.
it's back to paying bills.
and going to feed the pigs, at the 4H Romano Center, in Honeybrook.
the sale is tonight.
Just hoping to break even. :))

The kids showed their pigs last night.
I was heart swelling proud of them.
their first year. tons of unknowns and guessing our way thru the program, 
but super glad we did it.

yesterday morning, both kids were in tears. matt was stressed.
everyone said "never again"...
but by evening's end...which was 11:15 p.m.
everyone agreed they want to do it again.
nothing more fun then to see your children learning life lessons.
and having fun doing it.

bacon anyone? 

From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets, the name of the Lord is to be praised.
Psalm 113:3.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

To my dear grandparents.

so...i do not have very many loyal blog followers
which makes it really easy to slack off...
and well.
instagram. i post everything on there, so then i don't make this
quite as much of a
priority anymore.
boo. i know.

I do, however, have ONE loyal blog checker.
and that, my friends, is my pappy and grandma.
they request a blog entry EVERY time i go to visit.
every.single.time. :)

it's the sweetest thing.

and ALL of my doing...because out of ALL of their grandchildren,
i am the ONLY one who put her blog address into their favorite bar on their i-pad.


my 90 year old "pappy" with Karolina- 3, and Calli-6.

my 90 year old grandma with Calli-6 and Karolina-3.

the kids have always loved visiting their great grandparents.
each set of great grandparents they have gotton the priviledge of knowing,
have always had a toy box for them to play in.

a lot of the toys in this toy box, are toys that i used to play with as a child.
it's fun to see them play with them.
and fun for me to remember the memories all of those toys hold for me.

these are the grandparents i spent a lot of time with.
i grew up on the dairy farm that they used to farm.
and then, they built a house, on land connected to our farm.
so there was lots of riding bike and/or walking up thru the fields in the summer time
to eat blueberries out of the garden.
or swim in the pool.
or quilt with my grandma.
or play with toys. or eat white toast with homemade strawberry jelly. :)
i love the memories i have with them. they will always be treasured.

i need to do a better job of visiting them.
they are only a half hour away now.
why do i let life swallow me up and keep my away from doing important things?
they will not be here much longer.
and still have so much wisdom for me.

we always talk about farming. and chickens.
today we encorporated puppies and our pigs too.
mothering. (it is no wonder i am in love with babies...i get that from my mom and grandma).
gardening. birthdays. weather. matt. and what he's doing.
and life in general.

so...to pappy and grandma.
i love you.
thanks for loving me and my family.
the kids always love to come visit.
we'll be back again soon to eat apples and steal all the chocolate from your candy dish.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

joanna gaines. and a snippet about my thoughts on technology.

so. let's be honest.

technology. i feel like Satan has a field day using techology in our day and age.
sure. there has always been the same problems of our day, as in days gone by.
BUT...i feel as if they are skyrocketing to a whole new level.
Satan has a whole new platform to use, to tear apart families and relationships.

that being said. most of my friends know that matt and i are not a part of facebook.
something we decided years ago.
i remember joining for a brief milisecond, and this barely clothed female popped up on the screen.
as someone we "may" know.
now. i know you can set blocks and all kinds of things.
but this was "enough" for me to say, "no way."
and we both feel good about that decision.

sometimes it feels good to buck the trend. ya know?
we miss out on some things because we are not on facebook.
the world expects you to be "there", so that's how invitations are communicated now.
parties. and family gatherings. and even church things.

what is my point?

well. as much as i hate facebook.
i love instagram. and pinterest.
and surely Satan is using these platforms to tear apart relationships as well.
mainly, i think of women.

women are wired differently from men.
God did that on purpose. i know.
but it's hard for women to not get sucked into comparing. and jealousy.
we struggle with such different things then men.

back to my point.

i came upon this video thru instagram yesterday.
this lady. joanna gaines. and her husband, chip.
they seem like a couple matt and i would get along with.
and maybe the whole world feels that way?
their show is awesome.
we only get to watch a teeny bit when we go to my mom's, when the girls are at ballet.
(but i am going to start watching re-runs on the computer...here we go again...technology). :))

but, i wanted to share it.
she speaks some of my passion for women. and dreams.
watch it.
and maybe their show too...it's called Fixer Upper.

and as much as Satan is using some of these platforms to tear families apart.
God is also using them to reach his people.
how is he using these platforms in your life?

i wonder?


Thursday, March 12, 2015

Heather Williams.

I know I am not writing on here like I love too.
Life has gotton the best of me.
I feel like I am running around serving people all the time.
That's what I do. That is what I love to do.
Most days. :))

Today the kids have a half day of school, so I am trying to get some things done,
before they come home, and undue them again.

haaaa. the life of a mother. you get something looking fabulous.
and it is undone in a matter of minutes.

they tell me, i am gonna miss that.
we'll see. :)

anyway, taking some time out to listen to Jesus this morning,
and thought i would share...

I heard this Hallelujah song the other day, and really loved it.

This morning, I found this...
Listen to it.

One of my husband's favorite lines (he has many) :)  is, "You always have a choice. YOU ultimately are the one to decide if you are going to wallow in your "woe is me, you don't understand, i was mistreated and abused, and...nevermind." It is up to you how you are going to handle life's disappointments.

And while this is true, there is so much more that goes into that.
This story is amazing.
So hard.
So powerful. What a testimony to God's power, right?

and the song that drew me to her, is this one...

Such horrific loss. There are no words.


Thankful. I am thankful i have not experienced such grievous loss.
Thank you Jesus.

Have you felt the love of Jesus today?

I am running around getting laundry done.
Getting the house "read" up before Campbell's birthday party Sunday.
Karolina was up all night, coughing.
Somewhere hiding in all this strep throat, she caught a nasty cold.
But in my weariness, I have felt Jesus today.

Have you?