Monday, September 8, 2014


my husband is 40.
i tried for months to conceal a 40 party for him.
it didn't work.
i tried my best.
i planned this dinner party for eleven of his close friends and their spouses.
it was HUGE amounts of fun.
i planned it around our chickens.
well. because that seemed smart.
until. they threw us a wrench.
yes. a wrench.
we have been having 4-6 days off between flocks for over a year.
and this time.
well. this time. they gave us THREE WEEKS.
are you kidding me?
so. when we get more than 6 days off, it means that we pack up. and leave.
so. naturally. we packed up and went to the mountains our first weekend off.
matt had big plans to pack up and leave for our second weekend off.
which meant leaving thursday thru monday.
i didn't freak out just yet, because we had a wedding on that saturday...
but all the suddern he decided we were going to "skip" it.
he would talk to the mother of the groom, and all would be "fine".
oh DEAR. now i started to panic a teeny bit.
 after some panic? questioning? with a friend. i decided i had to tell him something. so...
i told him that we were not going to be able to go away until monday.
because there was a suprise scheduled for sunday.
he said "oh".
that was it.
not another peep from him.
[if that was me, i would have been peeping on the computer at his emails.
listening in on phone calls, spying on texts, and bugging him to no end to spill the details.
my man. did not ask a single solitary question.
it kinda drove me crazy actually. :))
it would have been much easier if he asked, and i could have just told him everything.
apparently, he likes surprises. :))]

had to remove the centerpieces...just not enough room. ;/

when i decided to have a surprise, i decided to have it catered.
those who know me well, know that i love to entertain. i love to throw parties.
 and i love all the little details.
there was no way i could surprise him, if i was buying and preparing food all week prior
to the party. therefore,
the notion, go big or don't go at all came into play. ;))
i used Blue Marlin Catering out of Rising Sun, MD.
i was thrilled with their food and service.
I took care of drinks and desserts, and they covered the rest.
a huge buffet meal, with appetizers and their reknowned crab bisque soup.
i don't know that i need to have a surprise party anytime real soon. :)))
a) the weather disappointment, and b) trying so hard to surprise, and then it doesn't
work out is kinda a huge bummer. in my book.
but it was a fun night.
matt totally loved it.
thank you so much to everyone who came.
it was truely a time of having his closest friends together.
thank you for the part each of you  play in our lives.
we are blessed.
that was something else funny.
it was a holiday weekend, so i anticipated only a few people making it, and EVERYONE could come.
the other glitch was...the weather.
i was hoping to host one of those beautiful outdoor parties, by our pond.
you know, totally pinterest inspired.
i was so excited.
a friend, and my sister, and parents came to help me decorate...and prep.
well. it poured. FOUR times, from set up to completion of party.
so...obviously we did make the right choice, and had it inside.
huge deviation. but fun. none the less.
lots of moving furniture, throwing things in closets, and putting my mom to work at
putting vases of flowers everywhere. ;))

stunning clouds...

my friend, kelly, holding my other friends baby, sadie. :)

i really did have lots of flowers...they just didn't fit on this table either. :))

thankful for a big house that can house 24 guests.
cozy. but not unbearable.
thanks to everyone who helped me pull it off.

happy 40th babe.



Saturday, September 6, 2014

school is here.

each year the summer rolls around.
with such excitement.
i really do love the change of pace.
the sun and warmer temps fill my soul.
the kids being home.
sure there is more instigating, complaining and messes.
but really...what should i expect?
5 kids and a mom in a space together.and throw in the dad sometimes too.
of course. this is real life living.
all that to say, we had a GREAT summer this year.
it flew by way too fast.
and each year as school approaches, i get this little belly ache about it.
i suppose i am not the only mother who wonders about her schooling decisions?
we have had a great year in our public school system thus far.
kaden is in 5th grade this year.
lots of newness.
a new building.
a locker. changing classes. trombone lessons.dances.
(of man, i have to start bribing him to stay home from dances ALREADY?) ;/
lots and LOTS of responsibility.
i came back from his parents back to school night, filled with both excitement and terror.
maybe some of my fear is not knowing quite what to expect.
yes, i heard the high expectations from his teachers, but wondering since we have an IEP for him now, what that will look like?
kaycee is in 4th grade.
can't say lots of newness for her.
she is in the same building i attended...just when i attended it was k thru 4. now it's just grades 3 and 4.
i love that people know "my family" now.
kaden's old teacher saw her in the hallway, complimenting her headband, and gave a HUGE
compliment to kaycee's teacher about our kids and family.
that is real life. in the public school system.
in any school system. the little things God throws in your lap,
to give you a "thata girl", "see, you are figuring this parenting thing out after all."
kaycee loves school also.
quiet. shy. keeps to herself. excels in academics
my spunky, moody, fun, kicking life to the curb, kinda gal.
is in 2nd grade.
she has walked calli to her class each morning.
love her.
she is also loving school.
she also keeps to herself a good bit.
was sad the other day, when some girls at her table made fun of her snack of peanut butter and carrots.
boo. to them.
she rallied.
she is trying to figure out her place in all the girl drama.
i am not a fan of BFFs...(best friends forever)
girls have a tendency to be allll about this.
i tell her to watch her dad in motion. he is someone i have always admired for many reasons.
but one BIG reason is that he can talk to anyone. and does.
it's all about relationships with him. and so we are really trying to teach our kids that from little on up.
"you don't need a BFF...why don't you go play with the little girl in the corner who no one
is talking too?""be kind to everyone"...
afterall, we all know what it feels like to be made fun of.
even if it's for what we are eating for snack.  ;(
and that brings me to calli
she is rocking out kindergarten this year.
loving each minute.
i pick her up each day at 1:05 pm, despite the full day requirement.
nothing against our school, i am just not a fan.
my kids grow up w.a.y. too fast, and i am just not convinced a full day program is necessary when they are 5 years old.
(i did this with campbell, also when she was in k, and she is not behind in any subject...
so that was my go-ahead it again...)  :))
she can't WAIT to learn to read.
loves gym. and art. and reading.
she is my hugger.
she gleams when i pick her up (even though she would love to stay all day)
and hugs karolina too.
and i suppose that brings me to the hardest part about schooling.
knowing and realizing our children are being influenced for more hours out of the day
then we even see them. eeeekkkkkkk.
 i hate that reality. however,
believing and trusting in the Lord, for a great plan to unravel in each of my children's lives.
draws me to my knees infact.
i have mentioned this before.
i love hearing the morning announcements. hearing the kids out at recess.seeing all the sporting events, in my front yard...all draw me to my knees for my kids. causes me to stop a second and pray for them. and me. and our family.
anyway. got to mention karolina too.
she is 3 now. she is also full and over flowing with spunk.
she just started telling me NO, and thinking it's funny.
i love our days.
i can get so much done, it's crazy.
i do try to be intentional about soaking up this time with her.
it is fleeting. you don't have to tell me twice. :))
she is potty trained. now, i just need to get rid of that nuk.
she is my last.
very evident. i just keep saying, "maybe tomorrow" .

Friday, September 5, 2014

it's been awhile.

that's an understatement.
it's been a crazy.long.while.
i am busy.
and overwhelmed with life.
since i have last written.
summer has ended. done. but a memory.
school has started.
matt turned 40. and i had a surprise party for him.
we have had weddings.
and fall ball has started.
ballet has started as well.
life is seeming very busy.
most days it's good.
but i am struggling to find a "new normal" right now.
the start of the school year has been fabulous.
but we really haven't started anything hard yet.
like. homework. for instance.
i hate when life gets in such a hurry.
like now.
i hate that feeling.
i kept saying...the kids birthdays.
then i would say. school starts.
then i would say matt's birthday party.
then i would say these weddings. and now. NOW... almost all of those things are finished.
and i can focus on ME?
is that what needs to happen?
it is crazy different around here with just karolina and i.
i love it. my days can be empty and fun.
if i don't fill them up with stuff.
what a challenge.
that's all i am going to leave you with for now.
matt's party was supposed to be outside. but it rained. and rained. and then rained some more.
so i had to have it inside.
which meant lots of stuffing "stuff" places. i am "unstuffing" and making lots of trips to reuzit.
i have too much "stuff"...
and many. many pictures to share soon. ;)

Saturday, July 26, 2014

* birthdays and a beach day. *

WHERE has the summer gone, i ask you?

it seems way more busy then summer's past.
or. is it just because i am 36 now, and can't keep up?



karolina grace turned THREE this week.
can hardly believe it.
bare with me, i know i say that EVERY year...

[my labor with karolina started at midnight on july 23, 2011 and i was holding her in my arms
at 3:32 a.m. my fastest labor was two hours, which i was expecting, with my 5th delivery...
i thought 3.5 was too long. :)) i gave birth at birth care in Georgetown, in the water. my favorite.
no meds. just. plain. ol. water. that's how i roll. :)]

delighted to have karolina in our family.
i love her spunky character. her favorite lines right now are:
"just a minute mom"
"punchbuggy. no punchbacks"
she loves to ride bike. put together puzzles. play play dough.
DANCE. loves to dance. and SING.
she loves to pray outloud. (be still my heart. help me never forget her little prayers).
happy to say she was my easiest to potty train.
hallelujah for that. :)
our next job to tackle will be getting rid of her nuk...


Happy THIRD birthday karolina.
you are treasured and precious.
i hope you always know.

***************************************************** the next segment. ;)

the buckwalter family used to take a vacation together each year to the beach.
for a week.
chaos yes. fun. totally. still love each other in the end. yep.
but. we don't do it anymore.

so this year i decided to plan a cousins beach day, DAY trip, once a month.
june. july. and august.
well. june's got cancelled. and well. july's got rescheduled three times.
but finally. we made it.
on karolina's third birthday.

relaxing. not really. a time to catch up. not really.
memory making for the kids. yep.
fun in the sun. yep.
time to read a good book. nope.
any kids get lost? nope. notta one.
with 18, that's pretty remarkable.


calli ann. age 5.
campbell meg. age 7.
kaden rockwell. age 11.
karolina grace. she's 3. ;)
kaycee agnes. age 9.

jaiden micah. he doesn't belong to me. but he loves me.
can you tell?
he is my sister's. ;)

the girls were trying to skim board here. :)
can you imagine the drama in a few years?
no wonder my parents put a stop to the beach trip now.
before.the.drama.  :)))

such a fun day.
here's to the next one on august 7th.
whoo.hoo. :)


and finally...
kaden rockwell turned 11 a day after karolina turned 3.

i was so disappointed about that, when karolina was born.
2 weeks late again. as usual.
and really. she had to come so close to kaden's birthday?

it's really not THAT big of a deal.
i mean. here in America we can find anything to complain about.

SERIOUSLY. tell me to get a grip.

it's just a lot of partying and celebrating so close.
and i try to DO birthdays.
i really do.
so. part of that is my own fault.

if i would just simmer down a little bit,
i wouldn't be so exhausted after karolina and kaden's birthdays. :)))

[kaden weighed in at 8 lbs. 4 oz. he was only ONE day overdue. and then with the girls i got progressively later. ;/
he was my only hospital birth. i remember the nurses were so PROUD of me for not getting pain meds. they just kept saying, "are you sure you don't want anything?" "just a little something to take the edge off" they said, "you don't understand, we just never see this, and it's your first baby."

i should maybe have changed my mind after they gave me pitocin, towards the end. ;))

i went in "THINKING" i was in labor at 2 am the 23rd.
i chuckle as i look back.
my first baby. how do you know what to expect?
i CLEARLY did not know. :)))
i was 2 cm. they sent me home with some sleeping pills.

i was sad about that.
but i did sleep. :))

i went back at 2 am on the 24th, and was 6 cm,
and they let me stay. :))

kaden rockwell was born at 1:31 p.m. in the afternoon. ]

there is nothing like your first baby is there?
he is the one who made me a mama for the very first time.
i don't know how to be a mom...he is the one i get to "try" things out on.
those poor firstborns. :))

so thankful for kaden.
he is solid. he is a leader. he is a snuggler.
and emotional.
he loves sports. any. especially baseball.
he is getting to be chatty. about big people things.
he knows a lot. his life experiences are big.
he doesn't like to work.
but he can if you make him. or entice him with money. :))
he is determined.
and starting to challenge my authority.
eeeekkkkkk. :/

this year kaden went to a boy cousin sleepover at his cousins house.
it happened to be on his birthday.
kind of fun. he had a blast.
just strange for mommy not having him around on his birthday. :)))

i didn't get as many pictures of kaden as i usually do.
he just wasn't here.
he was bummed about the picture part.

stay home next year. ;)

oh kaden.
it is my hope and dream for you.
that you will always know your worth.
you will stand strong in what you believe in.
and lead others to the Lord...

you are loved. and treasured so.

Monday, July 7, 2014

10 U baseball.

what a wild ride this baseball is.
whew. this mama is worn out.
playing baseball since school has been out.
practice every night.
then. games every other night, sometimes every night.

i was talking to another more seasoned baseball mom last night.
i was wondering for what else in life do we drop everything, and do something.

maybe in farming. when you have to bale hay, etc.
i guess maybe, there are some similarities.
but. this is crazy.

drop. everything. and go.
lucky for us, Christiana hosts the 10 U tournament each year.
so, last year, we were playing in new holland, but this year, it was christiana.
yeee.haaa. i like it.

anyway. to make a long story short.
our team won districts last week.
so. now we go to sectionals. they start next week.

i am taking my kids to the beach tomorrow.
just because.
kaden is missing practice. and we are going.
daddy will be busy with straw. so. we are just going. that's all. :))

i am so proud of kaden. he has had such a SUPER attitude throughout this post season.
all stars is tricky. maybe there is even some politics involved.
dare i say that outloud? ;))

anyway. kaden was thrilled to be chosen to be on the team.
he was also on the team last year, and didn't play a huge amount...
and it was frustrating for him. because when he did play, he played in the outfield.
which is not his position.

long story short. i reminded him of what that felt like, last year.
but he still wanted to play.

same thing this year. same coach too.
he plays. but usually doesn't start, and has never once played catcher.
which is the whole reason why he made the team to begin with. :/ he plays outfield.

he has been so steller. sometimes mama's attitude has been worse than kaden's.
eeeeekkkkk. no good.
life lessons. i suppose. life lessons.

anyway. all that to say,
we have our first sectional game on monday night, at solanco.

go OCTORARA!!!! :)))
(and thanks karen for all these pictures).

Saturday, June 21, 2014

fishing. and tractors. and all star baseball.

it has been  said that kaden is spoiled by his paternal grandparents.
he is the only grandson. :)) 

kaden has been going on this fishing trip, with his poppy, probably since he was 6 years old??
i guess it's a man only trip. that's the only thing we can figure out, since none of us ladies
have ever been invited. :))

this was one picture poppy took of one of the fish kaden caught on tuesday.


last week we had vbs at our church.
i was the craft teacher.
and i am not kidding. it WIPED me out.
i am exhausted.
what fun.
something i love, but i did not figure prepping and preparing and doing crafts with 100 kids
would be so exhausting. :/

since the rest of us were tied up with vbs, that meant daddy got to have one on one time with
our youngest, karolina.
one evening they returned poppy's special tractor, to his house in gap.

apparently, karolina was waving to every car they passed...
and some man from delaware stopped to see if he could take a picture, and then,
sent it to matt!

funny. as long as it doesn't turn up in some magazine for people not taking adequate care of their children.


and kaden made the all star baseball team, which he is thrilled about.
mommy is less than thrilled.
all.the.pressure. is ENORMOUS.
i can't stand it.

i really think i would be fine if my children did not want to play sports.

he was at baseball camp all week at our school, from 9 am until 3 pm,
and would come home, and then go to all star practice from 6 pm until 8 pm.

exhausted. he is.

tourney starts next saturday.
we will see how they do. look pretty good, i must say.

here we come williamsport.

just kidding. :) but. maybe. who knows? ;0)

Saturday, June 7, 2014


we love watching these boys perform.
this time they did a katie perry song, "roar".