Rylee’s party

Rylee with puppies
Rylee with puppies
Cousin Isaac watching puppies
Cousin Isaac watching puppies
Our own Davy Crocket!
Our own Davy Crocket!

Rylee with Payton on the cart
Rylee with Payton on the cart
Rylee on a horse
Rylee on a horse
Mama and Kyler riding a horse-he was so brave!
Mama and Kyler riding a horse-he was so brave!
The boys had more fun running and playing with toy guns than riding horses or playing with puppies!
The boys had more fun running and playing with toy guns than riding horses or playing with puppies!
A treasure (candy) search in the hay pile
A treasure (candy) search in the hay pile
The birthday girl and her horse cupcakes
The birthday girl and her horse cupcakes

Our friends Mark and Holly opened up their home to us today to make Rylee’s party so special.  She has been talking to strangers at the grocery store, to anyone who will listen about her upcoming party with so much anticipation.  It was everything she’d hoped for.  Thank you!

Holly and Audrey
Holly and Audrey

God, gojis and grace

Given my very short couple of hours of sleep last night, truly the above are what have sustained me thus far today and I know will be what get us all to dinner/daddy time tonight.  And the fact that my sister is bringing us dinner tonight, that too.

Caleb is fairly frustrated with his lack of mobility. The novelty of the black cast has worn off. However, today was one of our most fun mornings in a really long time. Strange so, me with a screaming baby up most of the night quite tired and Kyler with a bad cold and Rylee with very sore six year old molars coming in and Caleb limping around getting used to his lame foot. I prayed this morning for grace today. I’m learning. Really slowly.

Instead of praying for things to go smoothly and perfectly, they never do anyway, I asked for the right responses. Responses that model love and patience instead of anger and frustration. In fact I think it went something like this….”I know my kids will misbehave and won’t do everything I ask them to, I am not responsible for their bad behavior-but I am responsible for my bad responses.” Today, an extra heap of grace was needed. I asked in the dark hours before the sun came up to somehow be an extension of God’s love despite my seemingly useless condition. I don’t understand how but I am so grateful that he listens and answers when I whisper quiet words or when I shout in desperation. He loved my children well today and I feel as though I had very little to do with it.

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Caleb and Rylee decorating "Gertie"
Rylee hanging her cheerio string for the birds
Rylee hanging her cheerio string for the birds

Caleb looking for a place for his bird string to hang
Caleb looking for a place for his bird string to hang
Rylee with the angel girls
Rylee with the angel girls

I’m not sure which is more funny to me, Caleb’s outfit-Lightening McQueen pajamas in midday, a silk train necktie, a Target bag wrapping his cast or Rylee taking her ‘girls for a walk’ around the culdesac-she sure loves taking care of people, even when they are 3 feet tall and plastic!

As for the goji berries, I am so without sleep that I am trying to take a good amount of vitamins and supplements to try and restore my body despite it all. They really are perky little things even if they taste kind of crummy!

1 down, 19 to go…

Note the gap on the bottom row of that beautiful smile!
Note the gap in that beautiful smile!

Well, the day finally arrived. After about a month of “working” on the tooth, it finally came out. Everyone was excited, jumping up and down. Our little girl is certainly not a baby anymore. The first loss of her baby teeth is not the first sign that our little girl is growing up, but it is certainly the latest. We were moving it around with a tissue and then I barely pulled on it and it came right out. When I would have loose teeth, my dad would tie a piece of dental floss around the tooth and either yank it out by hand or by the shutting of a door (with floss attached to door knob). This was quick and painless, but Rylee was not thinking it was such a great idea. How do you typically get your kiddos teeth out, or how did your folks get your teeth out?

-Chris

Pretty in pink

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Rylee had the delight of attending the PNB Nutcracker yesterday with her Nana. They had a fabulous time. Then today she had a little ballet recital which was very fun too.

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"Everyone take a bow"
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Look at those "fairy feet" go!
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Rylee seems to have a real knack for ballet so far. After only 7 classes she was pretty good with her moves. Hopefully we can get her in another class soon. Thanks to all of you who have played a role in helping Rylee get a good start in ballet. If you ever get the opportunity, ask Rylee to do her “build a snowman” dance, it’s a winner for sure.

-Chris

Daddy Daughter Dance

Northshore’s annual Daddy Daughter Dance is upon us once again. Each year they use the opportunity to have Dads bring their daughter’s on a date for dancing and dessert to raise money for two great causes. This year’s causes are a Safe Haven in Cambodia to combat the human trafficking of children and the Havilah School in Nicaragua. Rylee is so excited to go she has had her dress picked out for about a week.  It has been hanging that long on the side of Audrey’s crib.  The other day she told me she had even picked out the tights. She said the only thing she needs to do is have mama straighten her hair.  Tomorrow is the big day and I can’t wait to take my little girl (who is just about to lose her first tooth) on a dancing date.

-Chris

Our fall family pumpkin adventure

  • Gearing up for our annual family pumpkin adventure with Dee Dee and Buzz and this year Isaac too!

    Kyler was serious in his anticipation of the tractor ride to the pumpkin field…

    But once we got there, he warmed up and had some lovin’ for his mama…

    Watching Caleb run free in the tall weeds, I told Christopher “If that boy had land and tasks every day, he’d probably never have another tantrum”. He is SO happy being free to roam and having a job to do-can you find him in this picture?

    His job? Finding tiny pumpkins hidden under huge leaves!

    Rylee loved the tire swing and wore out Dee Dee asking to be pushed…

    Puckering up for a fly-by kiss for Mama

    That’s about it-good fun had by all…what about number four? Not to be forgotten, Audrey enjoyed the day snuggled up with her Daddy in the frontpack!

    Life

    Rylee stated matter-of-factly in the car yesterday that if we get another baby boy, we would have to move the carseats all around in the van. How very true I replied.

    Tonight as I tucked her in to bed, she jabbered on like she does every night, trying to get all her words out for the day.

    Rylee: “Mom, what if I had 300 babies when I grow up?”

    Me: “Wow, that would be a lot of babies.”

    Rylee: “You’d have to come help me take care of all the kids.”

    Me: “Yes I would, you would need lots of help.”

    Rylee: “There would be kids everywhere, we’d have to take everything out of the house and just make room for all of them. We’d have kids in the kitchen, in the cupboards, in every room. We could sort them by age.”

    Me (highly amused now, but just smiling-careful not to laugh): “It would be pretty crazy wouldn’t it?”

    Rylee: “Yeah, but fun.”

    That’s how I feel about our four-kid-life. It’s crazy and at the moment a lot feels uncertain and scary but it’s amazing at the same time. I’m glad Rylee understands one of our core family values. Life. Life in every form is a gift. Life in the form of babies is one we highly regard around here. They are a treasure beyond words.

    For all of you wondering if this is my subtle way of telling you something, you can stop wondering, definitely not. But don’t be surprised when I do…

    Sink baths

    “Don’t climb out!” (shrieking and giggles) “No, come back I’m trying to give you a bath” (more giggles) “Kyler, don’t touch it, it’s mine”

    I’m listening to this commotion from Rylee’s room as I am holding her in my lap while she sobs for her Daddy. One of his shirts ended up in her laundry basket and while she was putting her clothes away, she pulled it out and started crying-I asked what was wrong she said with tears streaming down her face-“When I picked up Daddy’s shirt, it made me think of him and I wished he was here with me.” Wow, I was amazed that our emotional bent begins at this early age. From the sound of her quivering voice you’d have thought her Dad was gone forever. It made me cry, we wiped each other’s tears and hugged some more.

    Back to the ruckus in the bathroom, I thought I’d better check it out, this is what I found: