Thursday, November 22, 2012

Giving Thanks

This morning my thoughts have been on how blessed I am. The Lord has blessed me more that I deserve. After almost overposting on Facebook about everything I'm thankful for I thought it might be better for everyone involved to write all my blessings here.
  1. Jesus. Without his amazing love and forgiveness my life would be completely different. He has restored this family and my marriage over the last year. We may not have had what people would think was a bad marriage but by never giving up on Ben, He got our relationship back where it should be, with Christ as the center!
  2. My handsome Husband. Not only does he provide for us, but he does so without complaining. Ever. I'm serious! In the past couple months Ben has been dealing a lot with being sick, and many days he has to got to work at 4:30am even if he has worked late the nights before and getting only a few hours of sleep. He never complains or whines. He just provides faithfully for his family. I would be whining to anyone within hearing distance if I had to do that. I admire that man so much. I'm thankful that he loves m even when I'm so unlovable and at my crabbiest. He is patient with me. Have I told you how much I love him? It doesn't hurt that he's a handsome one at that;)
  3. My 6, yes SIX!!!!!! children! I really never would have thought that I would be blessed with all these kids. Even though they test me daily to the edge of sanity, I would never trade my life of being their Mama. They make me laugh everyday. And for sure I wouldn't be nearly as funny if I didn't have them. They laugh at all my jokes. Which is good for the ego;) I am so proud of each one of them. Clint, Ethan, Blake, Owen, Audrey and Killian, without you I wouldn't be nearly as crazy but I wouldn't be as happy either!
  4. My sisters. They are my very bestest friends. I talk to them on a daily basis and can't imagine going through life without them. They are some of the funniest girls I know. They are the best girlfriends I could ever ask for!
  5. My mama and papa. Thanks for raising me to love Jesus. Thanks for being there when I need you. Thanks for loving my kids:) They love their Grandma Kay and Grandpa Jim.
  6. For my brothers. Jake, my big brother, I love you even though you used to pick on my like crazy and never seemed to like me much growing up. I loved having a big brother and really loved working with you on the pig farm when I was younger. I thought I was so cool that I got to work with you. It makes me happy that you and Ben are good friends and that our kids love playing together. To my little bothers  Brothers;) Even though we didn't grow up together, I was so happy when you guys were born. And even though it seemed like a lot of work babysitting you and changing your diapers you life wouldn't be the same if you guys weren't around;) You have been wonderful Uncles to your not much younger that yourselves nephews and niece. Michael, I love it that you are my Clint's very bestest bud!
  7. Ben's family. You all have made me feel like one of you all. And after over 11 years I feel like I have always been. You are always there when we need you and thank you for raising up such a wonderful man!
  8. My homeschooling mama's! What would I do if I didn't get the encouragement that I do from you all! Homeschooling alone is enough to break a person but when I need the right words to get me to keep going you know just what to say.
  9. To all of our friends out there. We are so thankful to have each and every one of you in our life! You all bring something different and wonderful to our lives and we love you all so much.
  10. This house!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You know, after living in a small, rundown house for the last 11 years moving to this house feels like a mansion. I never thought I'd be living in a house that is only 3 years old and not over 100 like the other place. I'm thankful for all the room we have now for our growing bunch. A warm home, one that doesn't have drafts everywhere and one that I don't have to worry about keeping a wood stove going all night long. We are only here because of the grace of God. Thank you Jesus for this home!
  11. Ben's job. For over 5 years I had a truck driver for a husband. It was tough. Most of the time I felt like a single mom. Ben was gone usually 5 days as well as nights a week. Some days it felt like I was just trying to make it through the week and not enjoying any of it. Now with Ben home every single night, I feel like I can enjoy each day knowing he will be home at the end and not just pushing through until his day off. Truly living for the weekend so to speak. The kids missed him so much and we always starving for his attention when he would be home. Now he is there for them every night and it has really made a difference in their attitudes and behaviors.
  12. Being able to Homeschool. Now I know it may not seem like I'm thankful for this very much, because truthfully it is a huge commitment and can be very stressful at times. But I'm so thankful that I get to spend all my days with my children teaching them what our family believes are good strong values and skills. To be able to be their biggest influence is a big responsibility but one that we feel is the best for our family.I'm thankful that as of now we are still free to teach our children from our home.
  13. That I am a Stay at Home Mama. It may not be a high paying career but I get payed daily in hugs, kisses and at times, slimy, snotty smears on my shirt. I get to be here when my babies take their first steps, say their first words, and do their first math problems. I get to make "owies" better, give encouragement, and be here whenever my kid need me. I may not get to go to the bathroom alone, or eat my food when its still warm but I'm my kids favorite mommy:)
There are so many, many more things that I am thankful for but right now I need to go take care of my "Blessings" They need their breakfast and someone needs a diaper change. I should add that I'm thankful for disposable diapers! I've done the cloth thing but seriously the disposable same me so much time!
Happy Thanksgiving!!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Ugly


Its been a while but that is what I love about this.

It might have been months but you are always here waiting for me, old friend, my blog.

We have settled quite nicely into our new home. Its better than we could have ever dreamed we'd be living in.

It's amazing, isn't it? The way the Lord takes care of us and meets our needs when we just can't see where we are going anymore. He meets us right where we are.

You'd think that we are perfect now. And though the Lord has met our every need, He is still working on those nagging things in our back closet. Those issues you really didn't even know you had. because you had never had the things you have now and never needed to tested and cleaned out.


Its an ugly word.

I always knew I was selfish to some extent. I mean, who isn't? Its in our very fleshly, human condition.

God is teaching us that with the blessings He has so richly bestowed upon us, we need to be more giving and sharing about what He has given us. And I do love giving. There is such rich blessings when you do. I thought I was pretty good at it. That is until God starts showing me ways that I'm not acting in an unselfish way.

I'm embarrassed to even be telling you this. I felt all afternoon that I need to share this though.

Here is is. The Ugly.

It started almost immediately after we moved here. Another family moved in on the same property as us. ( There is an old farmhouse that the owner decided they could live in while they fixed it up) Right away I thought, OH NO! I wanted some of the neat old furniture that was in the house! Right away I felt like I should slap myself! These people have practically nothing and here I am with everything I ever wanted and it still wasn't enough! Then the young mama living there came and asked if she could have some of the canned goods in the basement that were left here for our use. Her husband hadn't been payed yet from his new job and they didn't have a lot of money for food.Of course! What would Jesus do! I thought. After I gave her what I thought should be good enough, she said she would probably come back later to get more, my selfishness roared its big ugly head again. I thought- my, isn't it enough what I gave her? After she left, I was so overwhelmingly convicted and the verse about giving someone the shirt off your back kept slapping me in the face. I loaded up a basket of groceries out of my pantry and walked the humble road to her house. She was very thankful and grateful for my meager offering. What is wrong with me? Why do I act like a 2 year old? I have everything I need and more. All given to me by the grace of God and yet still., here I am acting like a child!

I am very ashamed about my selfish thoughts and actions. There have been numerous little things other than those stories that have shown me my horrible problem of selfishness. And yes, I do think that this culture we live in has groomed me to be this way. Everybody is taking care of #1. Everywhere you look is, Have It My Way! Everything shouts out "IT'S MINE". Why have we become a society that is so selfish? Aren't we supposed to help each other and take care of one another? What about "Love your brother as yourself"? That is probably the hardest one out there! Its easy to be generous outwardly but what about my thoughts? Are they selfless? Are they giving? That is probably where I struggle the most.

Want to know something though? Its pretty awesome! We can change! God keeps giving me opportunities to be selfless in deed and thought! He keeps testing me and I hope with His help I am learning something through this.

Oh, Lord, please continue to show me areas in my life that need to be cleaned and polished so I can have a heart like Yours!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The post in which I blubber so much it's embarrassing!

This week has been Cr.a.zy!
Right now, the kids are sprawled out in a living room with no couches. Only blankets and pillows on the floor. Watching Kung Fu Panda 2. I had a hard time getting little K down for the night since I usually sit on the couch and nurse him til he's asleep and watch JAG ( remember JAG? love that show). he thought it was WAY too much fun to try and climb on the older kids than go to sleep. Had to go up and rock him in my room and listen to Ben snore for quite a while to get him down.
 The reason the kids are on the floor, you ask? Well, Dad and a couple of Uncles came around today and stripped the house of all Living Room furniture and their beds. They are thinking its pretty neat! I'm thinking last night was the last night I would tuck them into their tight, make you claustrophobic, squished as sardines bedroom. I wish I would have know it was to be the last night.
I'm sentimental like that.
Want to know what else I'm sentimental about? 
well, more like the picture in the frames.
The ones that were way up high and way in the back of the closet I was digging stuff out of today.
Could have had a big cry fest if I wouldn't have been being rushed to get the trailer filled.
So many frames of this woman as a new bride with her handsome groom. So many pictures of this woman as a new mommy with her little wee ones. So many photos of this woman when she was just a girl that thought she was so old and smart and knew everything. The girl moved into this house as a blushing bride just back from her Honeymoon, never knew that she was going to be filling this small little house with lots of babies, lots of laughter, lots of loudness, and most importantly lots of love. That girl never would have thought she would be living in the house more than 11 years later. She never would have suspected the struggles she would have. Never would have dreamt of the wonderful memories made here. Never would have thought of all the many birthdays celebrated here. Never known how she could have had so much joy living in this little house- not that she loved the house by any means, but about how many things made this house a home. The home where she put her little babies in their bassinets when they were brought home from the hospital. The home where she cleaned up sick kids messes. The home where she kissed so many "owies". The home where her babies took their first steps, their first falls. The home where she taught her children their school lessons. The home where you could never whisper a secret because someone could hear it no matter how quiet you where :) The home with only one bathroom and it was in the second story. The house that I potty trained 5 children ( some while very pregnant, climbing those stairs thousands of times!)
I will never forget the memories made in this little house under the Big Oaks. The house that has given me mounds of stories, of killing all the mice that tried to live with us. The never ending battle of spiders. The feeling of being so squished and trapped in the winter. The freezing in our bedrooms and being able to see your breath while you lay under layers of heavy blankets. The feeling of the wood stove, the sound of the wood crackly in the flames.
Even though our house was small, it was filled with love ( I know major cheese fest! - I am feeling that was right now!) And we always hoped when friends and family visited that they felt welcome and at home. I am super excited about the new bigger house and I'm sure we will make lots of new memories that I will go on and on about. Its just hard to leave something that's been a part of you for so long. Even if it drove you crazy, and you felt like you wanted it to burn to the ground ( when no one was in it , of course) and also be the one to light the match;) So we will say good bye, little house under the Mighty Oaks. You held our family and kept us safe. Thank you for all the life we have lived inside of you. And of all the memories that were made here, the mice will be the thing I won't miss at all!
That the end of my blubbering. For tonight anyways.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Let the packing begin....

WOW! All I have to say is "WOW!" to those who have moved multiple times! My hat is off to you! Packing is alot of work! I always dreaded this part of the thought of moving. I'm thankful that this is the first time I've had to do it. But then again, maybe if we've moved before I wouldn't have over 11 years of STUFF to pack! I've been filling boxes like crazy and it doesn't there doesn't seem to be an end in sight. I better hurry though, according to Ben we will be spending our first night at the new place this Friday.
We spent this past weekend mostly at the new place. I mostly helped the gentleman, who is living there now, move all his stuff to a corner of the basement for the time being and packing up his kitchen. Its quite a job with the kids running around and trying to keep little Killian occupied. I may have to take up my MIL's offer of watching the little ones this week a couple times.
 I packed up the van this morning with the first of what I'm sure will be multiple loads of household stuff. I'm hoping to get over there once the little kids get up from their naps. Then Clint has football and then we will be back over there again this evening. My head is spinning- is yours? 
Clint started 5th &6th Grade Tackle Football last week. He is so excited about it. He has been looking forward to this all summer. He looks so cute in all his gear:) He will be keeping us busy with driving him into practice in Litchfield 2 times a week with an extra one this week. ( Of course- the week we are moving!).
Please say a prayer that I don't lose my sanity this week! Hopefully the next time I am on here will be to show pictures of the new place and tell how much we love it there!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Be Still

This week has been a rollercoaster, putting it mildly.
I will start from the beginning.
At the start of last week, we were all geared up for the Primary Election that Ben was running for County Commissioner. Full of calling people, campaigning, and stress. By the end of Tuesday night we were biting our nails watching the results coming in. It was a close one, Ben getting 62 votes putting him in second with the 3rd place getting 60. He was in. Everything we had been working so hard to accomplish this entire summer had payed off. We were relieved and I was so happy Ben was happy. It was one of his goals to become County Commissioner and we were one step closer to making it.
Wednesday was just a nice day to enjoy the victory.
Thursday, Ben had a meeting with someone who we knew was moving soon and was thinking about leasing it out. It was something we had been praying about. A big house with lots and lots of room for our growing family and all in something we would possibly be able to afford.
I was a bundle of nerves that day, praying, waiting to hear how the meeting went. Finally when I couldn't handle it anymore- the waiting was getting to me- I decided to make an angelfood cake to keep my mind occupied. Mid-whipping the egg whites into an amazing meringue the phone rings. Ben calling to say we are moving! I am surprised the cake turned out my mind was so frazzled after that. We couldn't sleep that night. It was an unreal feeling. This thing that we had been praying and hoping for for the last 11 years living in this cramped home. I hadn't even seen the inside of the house at this point but knew that if God was opening this door for us, it would be exactly what we needed.

I had to wait until Saturday to see that house which was torture in itself. When we pulled up to the house the kids were so excited, running around that big yard, exploring the 23 acres!!! 23 acres!!!!! It is beautiful!
Ben and I headed to the house while the kids roamed the yard. As I stepped in, I wanted to just be jumping up and down, but somehow I composed myself and didn't make a fool of myself. The kitchen is everything i wanted in a kitchen. Compete with a stove top on the large island. Double oven on the wall and granite counter tops. At this point I was telling God, O.K Lord, This is a little over the top, this is too good for us. Then I stepped into the master bedroom. WOW!!! Twice the size of ours now complete with the best walk in closet ( A CLOSET!!!!!! I am almost more excited about closets than anything else in the house!!!) and a very large master bathroom with a big giant tub!
There is one other bedroom on the main floor and a big unfinished basement that will eventually be where the boys' bedrooms with be. We are just going to make them a rough bedroom down there for the time being.
The house is huge! Are you ready? Over 4000 sq. ft.!!!! That is like 3 times the size we are living in now! This was truly an amazing answer to prayer. Every hurdle that we thought would hinder us was taken care of. Every obstacle that we were sure would be a problem were already figured out. As we walked through the house with the Owner, the things he was telling us were just one right after the other Gods way of telling me that He had it all under control.

Not long after we got home from seeing the house, a neighbor came over to chat with Ben. After talking for a while, he asked where it was that we were moving to. Ben told him where and he told him that it wasn't in the District that Ben was running. Ben was confused, he thought for sure it was. They got out the plat book and looked and found out that it is literally 100 yards over the district line. After the neighbor left, Ben came in the house and informed of what he just learned. I was shocked. I immediately teared up but tried to compose myself. I told Ben that though this was the hardest thing I was ever going to tell him, if he thought that God wanted him to stay in our house and for him to continue running for Commissioner, I would be happy and not hold it against him. The next hours were torture for him. I could see the inner turmoil running rampant though him. He went to bed really early that night because he just didn't want to think about it anymore.

 That night I had a hard time sleeping. I was trying to resign myself to living here. I asked God why He allowed me to see the place of my dreams only to be ripped away from it right after. I thought that maybe I was being tested or tempted to see if I would be patient and wait for Him to lead us. Would I follow what I wanted or would I wait patiently for Him? I thought, maybe we are supposed to stay here and Ben to be commissioner. It was a rough night to say the least. It is so hard to know what God wants us to do sometimes.

The next morning, Be told me he was going to withdraw from the race and we would be moving. I couldn't believe it! I know how much Ben wanted the seat. He worked so hard for it. I felt horrible, that he was doing this for me. He emailed a bunch of his supporters and put his reasons on his Facebook wall. After he posted it I read it and I teared up, he was putting me first. 
I have never felt so loved by him. That was an enormous sacrifice for him to make. I really feel that he did make the right choice, not because it was what I wanted but that he has peace about it.

I am completely overwhelmed. I feel like the Lord is pouring out His blessings down on us. I told the Lord 'Its too much Lord, we dont' deserve it! We are not worthy of this'. I want anyone who is reading this to know, it is ONLY by the Grace of God that we are able to move to this place. It is only by the Grace of God that He heard the desires of my heart and is making them a reality! It is only, only by the Grace of God that he is working this out all in His perfect timing. I have felt over the past years that we were just standing still, waiting. It is such a hard place to be. I think it is way harder to Be Still than it is to move, especially when it seems everyone else around you seems to be in the fast lane and you are just stalled on the side of the road. I really had to learn what it meant to Be Still, and Know That He is God. I think the Lord was waiting for me to learn what it truly meant before this would all happen. I want to encourage you, if you feel like you've been just standing there waiting for His move so you can move forward. It will happen. It might take years. It will be a struggle. It might not happen the way YOU think is should, actually it probably WON'T! God's ways are perfect. His timing is perfect! You have no idea how many times I thought I knew how God should do things. I had it all figured out. If only He would do it this way, I would be happy. Or only if He would make this happen, I would be happy. It wasn't until I realized that only He knows what is best for me and allow Him to lead us would I be happy.

I waited patiently for the Lord. ( Psalm 40:1)

I encourage you to wait patiently for God's leading. Many times over the years, we have tried to make moves that were not part of His plan and in doing so we struggled even more than we would have had to. When we try to take it into our own hands and make moves and decisions that were not according to his word, He allows us to suffer for our mistakes so that we will run back to Him and rely solely and purposely on Him.

I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me. ( Acts 27:35)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Killian's 6 month photos

I know it seems like I'm a little behind, but you know I think I'm doing pretty good, what with having 6 kids and all ;)

Here are a few  , O.K, alot of pictures of my littlest cutie.
I actually did take these when he was 6mo 2 days, I just hadn't gotten them up on here.

I tried to just pick 1 or 2 to share but when you have a guy that is this photogenic and good for the camera its too hard to choose. Plus he has the best facial expressions. Listen to this mama gush! Stop me now! are my faves.....

...... isn't he cute?!

...It's driving me crazy! he is too chewy!...

...There should be a law against being so darn cute!....


...That smile drives me WiLd...

...I can't handle it...

Looking at these pictures even now makes me want to go wake the slumbering babe and kiss him all up. I better stop;)

Oh, and here is the installment of the monthly pictures.....
{I actually think I haven't put his 5 month ones on here either, so here are all 1-7 months in a nice little tidy package;) }

Friday, August 10, 2012

Storm Damage

Remember This Post?

Father's Day 2012
Well. The rest of the tree fell. The wrong way!
 It was our last hope chance of the tree falling on our house. Well, the Lord decided that I would not be getting a new house- this way anyways!

The storm was a nasty one- the damage in our area was horrible- there were fams just about destroyed. We were very thankful that no one was injured. We were very happy to have been at Ben's parents house during the storm and they have a nice safe basement to go in. 

This tall pine tree was bent and the botton of the trunk is broken so it willl need to come down soon or it will come down itself in another storm.

We were without power for a couple days which was very difficult. I definitly would not make a very good pioneer woman! I'm amazed at how much I depend on electricity!

At least we will have LOTS of wood to keep our wood stove going this winter!

Getting caught up and some things we've learned in the last 11 years

I have Internet again!
I've been dying to get on here and share our summer but haven't been able to due to our Internet being down.
On Father's Day there was a huge storm in our area and in the process must have moved our satellite. I think they have fixed it now, thankfully!
I had great plans to share a post about what Ben and I have learned being married 11 years, which we celebrated June 30th.
I will share a bit of the answers Ben and I wrote down.
What We've Learned in 11 years of Marriage
  1. Money disappears ( not sure that's because of me;)
  2. Love doesn't (Ahhhh- he's a sweetie:)
  3. Time Flies
  4. Kids are ALOT of work!
  5. Hunting is as fun as it was 12years ago ( not sure how I'm supposed to feel about that one!)
  1. I'm not as smart as I thought I was.
  2. I'm selfish.
  3. I can't force him to do anything!
  4. The hole in the ceiling will never be fixed.
  5. The wads of gum that Ben sticks to the shower will never be taken down unless I do it.
  6. I have never regretted marrying the guy!
  7. He still makes me laugh:)
These are just some of the silly things we came up with- there definitely are many more and even more reasons why I would never go back and change anything!


I will probably be mass posting today to get caught up!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Audrey's 3rd Birthday

How can my baby girl be 3 already?!
Time flies by too quickly!

We celebrated her Golden Birthday with Birthday Pancakes complete with candles. We gave her a Rapunzel doll with a matching dress for her to wear from "Tangled".

That afternoon, Grandpas and Grandmas and some Aunts and Uncles came over for cake. It was a beautiful day and we ate her "Angel" cake out on the patio.

Audrey also had her first "Girl" party. I had so much fun planning and decorating for her Tea Party Birthday.

It was all worth it when she walked out and saw it and said it was "Bootiful" :)

Auntie Jessica came and helped me prepare for the party. I couldn't have done it without her!

We had a Garden Tea Party complete with mini cucumber sandwiches, pb&j sandwiches, strawberries, grapes, pineapple, cupcakes, lemonade and of course tea:).

She had the bestest time ever:)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

my little girl

3 years ago today
our lives changed forever.
instead of being surrounded by everything boy,
we were given a gift.
in the form of a little
9 pound 1 ounce bundle
of pink

Audrey Elizabeth
was born

Everyday I am so happy God blessed me with a daughter.
I love my boys more than life but there is just a special bond between a mama and her little girl.

I love you Audrey!
Happy Birthday!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Our Weekend with the Carders

This past weekend we spent some time with Ben's friends the Carders.
They are his "second" family.
As is he has stayed at their home for a couple years once a week while he was trucking.
They would pick him up every Tuesday night, bring to their home, feed him and he would sleep there and then they would bring him back to his truck the next morning.
They spoiled him.

The kids have went there with him a few times and always came home going on and on about how much fun it was at their house.

So for Memorial Weekend the whole fam went.
They spoiled all of us with delicious food, wonderful conversations, pontoon rides, and a trip to the Waterpark for the older boys.

They told me that Ben has been like a brother to them and so that makes me their sister. I felt very welcome there. 

They live on the river on a very private lot in the Cities. You would never know that you in the cities though; deer, wild turkeys, and a fox were running though their yard. So peaceful there!

Can't wait to go again sometime. { If they can handle our rowdy bunch again!}

Killian's 4 months

I'm behind on putting this up. Its seems to be a trend with me. Being behind. Oh Well, better late than never I guess. Here are Killian's Monthly Photos up to 4 months......

I'm always amazied as how quickly he can go from happy and smiling to....

sad and crying in an instant!