Sunday, October 19, 2014

Changing Seasons

I left the window open last night because finally the nights are getting cool and I love the fresh air. As I drifted off to sleep, cool breeze stirring the papers on my nightstand  and the scent of a fire wafting through the air, I listened to the laughter and voices just below me enjoying the cool autumn night also. These were the voices of my daughter's friends, deep voices, not little squeaky, silly voices but the voices of teenage boys. They had all gathered outside on the porch to make smores and to laugh, talk and enjoy each others company. It made me smile.

Teenagers. Big bodies taking up all the furniture in our great room and spilling out onto the floor. Cheering for their favorite football team, eating hotdogs and snacks, and laughing hysterically. Girls sitting next to boys and NOT getting "cooties". We are changing seasons in our family. For so long we have had little ones, still do, that chatter, pretend, argue, giggle, play and require lots of hands on attendance . But now, now we are moving into another season of life called teenagers. And it is wonderful. I know, I know, teenagers? wonderful? I think sometimes teenagers get a bad reputation of being disrespectful, rude, self-centered, lazy and getting into trouble. But I have seen another side. These kids are polite, grateful, hard working, studious, kind and well behaved. They are a pleasure to be around and I enjoy my daughter and her friends. Now, before you get the wrong impression here and think things are "perfect", we do have the typical attitude, snippiness and so forth that goes along with kids growing up and becoming more independent and of course "knowing more than we do". But if you can look past those things, you see kids that have dreams, and kind hearts, hearts for mission trips, goals of playing college sports that require LOTS of hard work, hours of studying because grades ARE important to them, preparing birthday surprises for parents, painting incredible paintings, encouraging younger kids, supporting friends, and multitudes of other positives. I see young minds and hearts with big dreams for the future. I know they will make mistakes and have missteps but don't we all? They are on the edge of their beginning. They are getting ready to step out into life with all their ideas and dreams to meet the world head on and to change the world. I love listening to their dreams. It is encouraging and uplifting. They haven't been jaded yet. I hope they never get jaded. Those who are jaded don't believe in dreams and ideals anymore and I think that is sad. Where would the world be if we didn't have those who dreamed big and reached for the impossible?

So as we begin this new season, that will last for the next 15 years....WOW, I am going to embrace these young people, encourage them, pray for them, enjoy them. I am sure with 5 children and 15 more years of teenage we will have some bumps and snags. We will cross those bridges if they come. Life is short, seasons come and go, our kids grow and change, we grow and change and with each new, comes wonderful little deep voices and laughter that sing you to sleep on a cool autumn night.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Celebrating 50

My husband is ALOT older than me!
He turned 50 last week!
We have a big "thing" planned next spring when I, who am MUCH younger, also turn 50!
So we did a family celebration to.... well, CELEBRATE this milestone.

We had a fabulous time celebrating our favorite guy!!!
Love you so much babe!
50 looks FABULOUS on you!!!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

She cleans up nicely!

Most of the time my Big Girl can be found in Nike shorts and a t-shirt, soccer uniform or basketball uniform.
But not this night.
This night she looked like a princess.
And two little sisters were all over this one!
Julia was elected to the Homecoming court for the junior class and Friday night was the big night!
We found a beautiful dress, incredibly high heels, and the perfect jewelry.
We did her hair and make-up(still sporting the remnants of a black eye from a previous week's soccer game)
Put it all together.....
And she took my breath away.
And her Dad's.
And her brothers' and sisters'.

The little girls were enthralled as we began the transformation! So cute!!!

 My beautiful girl!

With her handsome escort.

Her best bud!

Her fashion consultants

Her biggest fans!!!!!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Fall Decorating....and something new!

Since the beginning of this little blog I have journaled our family's doings and happenings so that friends and family afar, or near, could keep up....if they wanted to. But mostly, as a way to journal our crazy life for my kids. They LOVE looking at what they did yesterday, last week and last year. As a mother of 5, my kids take up most of my time and energy and my heart is dedicated to them while they still want and need me :). However, I do have a few interests, hobbies and passions of my own. Some of them have been shared here with stories of faith, adoption and orphan care that are a BIG part of my heart as well. I also love decorating, crafting, repurposing, and cooking. Since I have a whole whopping 11-12 hours a week without kids now, I decided to start blogging some of these subjects too. So, from time to time I will be sharing decorating ideas, redo's, crafts and recipes my family enjoys. I hope to grow this part of my blog over time as it is the creative side of me that keeps me dreaming......and I LOVE trying to be creative! Notice I said TRYING to be creative. Martha Stewart I am not, nor do I have Better Homes and Gardens knocking down my door to photograph my kid friendly and very lived in house...remember 5 kids, 2 dogs and a bunny. The recipes are all things a busy mom could make, believe me as much as I like to cook, time is not abundant around here. Most of what I come up with I have seen somewhere else and either copy or tweak to my own liking. I am also quite the "Bargain Betty" and try to spend as little as possible to get the look I want! So without further ado......

Fall Decorating

My favorite season of the year is upon us. I love the somewhat cooler weather, colors, smells and coziness Autumn brings. Here is what fall looks like in our house this year.

Welcome to fall!

Our Dining Room 
Rarely used for dining but most always filled with puzzle or lego pieces of the latest project on hand.
This blackboard sign only took me an hour to look the way I wanted it too...UGH!

I love decoupage! A fun way to add a little something to the fake store bought pumpkins-scrapbook paper, Cricut machine and tada....a monogrammed pumpkin! 

 These clay pumpkins are about 20 years old and one of the first fall decorations I ever purchased.

Another monogrammed pumpkin on our bar.

Right next to the stove so when I cook I can look at my 5 favorite "pumpkins". My sister made this frame for me years ago. Again decoupage! And my favorite potter made the clay pumpkin.

On my desk next to my computer...a little Instagram filter added!

I found these jars in the "dollar section" at Target...boy do they have good stuff! Had NO idea what I was going to do with them but they were cheap and cute so I bought them. I painted them with a little chalkboard paint and filled them with our favorite candy. They will be reused at Christmas...JOY will fit quite nicely on them don't ya think?

Our kitchen table.
I bought these fake pumpkins for $1.00 each then used chalk paint in grey and cream to make them a little different. The glass vases also came from the Target "dollar section" and I filled them with sticks and golden weeds I found in the empty lot down the street. I did purchase the feathers for $1.29 for 5.

Again, fake pumpkins with chalk paint. I added a few gold polka dots this time for fun.

 You can't neglect the powder room!

 Julia and I made these fabric pumpkins years ago from a craft magazine suggestion. They bring back memories......

 At the top of the stairs I keep a basket of books filled with fall, Halloween and Thanksgiving stories. These only come out this time of year and the little kids get so excited to dig through the "new" books!

Outside on the covered porch where we spend a lot of time this time of year...dinner, coffee in the mornings, glass of wine at night, homework in the afternoons. One of my favorite spots!

I did not put these guys out this year and all of the kids asked me where they were? So up they went!

And just because I LOVE mums!

Happy Fall!
May you enjoy the many blessings and smiles this season brings!