November 2016 archive

Parenting

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What would I do without this guy? It’s in our shared parenting moments that I sometimes feel how different we are but yet how much I need his help. See that little girl in the background? She pouting because she wants to be carried….for the next few miles! She her legs? They are strong. See that red hair? She is stubborn. And so is this guy next to me so the wait can be long between these two as to who gives up first. That’s where I come in and ultimately give in. I convinced Rad to wash her off in the ocean so I could cary her. There was no need to stand here for way too long to see how this one played out. We had sand, mud and sea creatures to explore. I’m glad we could come to a happy agreement. Thanks Rad for being my partner in this crazy wild adventure called parenting. Oh and when those hard conversations come up with the kids….you got this!

Love your Neighbor

“Love your neighbor as yourself.” Oh how that rings true in this neighborhood. This photo is of 4 brothers (3 who are my neighbors). There are 9 of these siblings. 7 boys, 2 girls. They all grew up on our island. We live in their parents house and some of them grew up in our house. These neighbors would do anything for us. And they have. They have come to our rescue more times than we can count. They have encouraged us, taught us, helped us, loved on us beyond what I thought a neighbor could. They have welcomed us into their family, and invited us into their family gatherings. They are examples of what it means to love your neighbor. It’s funny to think back and remember how we were so excited to invest in our neighbors. We have so much to learn.

These guys are expert turkey fryers and the night before thanksgiving they had a gathering and fried all our turkeys and we shared a meal together (thanksgiving meal #1). Then on thanksgiving we went to another neighbors house and shared a meal again. When I say we have the best neighbors….we do. What a rare gift to be surrounded my such amazing people. Thank you God for where you placed us and for teaching us how to love each other better!

P.S. You have to watch the guy to the left of Mabry. She can get WHATEVER she wants when she is around him. She always tells me how much she wuuuuves (loves) him!

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Week Off

It was great to have a week break. If I ask myself what we did…honestly I can’t remember. The time flew by so fast that I’m not even sure how we got to the start of this next week. That pace and memory loss seem to fill my days lately. How are we almost in December? And for the love….bring on some cooler days! The kids have had LOTS of time outdoors. We spent a few days cleaning up in the back of our property from the hurricane as well as clearing land for a soon to be handmade tree house (let’s hope we can deliver on this one!). Rad is also in the throws of making us a farm table to seat more than just our little clan. He is using old church pews for the top. I can’t WAIT to see it completed! With the weather so nice, we have really been dreaming about what our next boat looks like. We promised ourselves to hold off until the new year when we had a few projects under our belt. In the meantime, trying to find the balance of projects and family time.

(I love the photo of the 3 boys. These boys create fun wherever they find themselves!)img_0625 img_0642 img_0648 img_0654

Live out Here

Bonfires, mule rides and our tagalong dog (who doesn’t like to be photographed). We get excited about all those things. It’s a great life we have here in the country, I mean on the island. Looking forward to some family time coming up this next week! It might involve chainsawing more trees, and building a tree house or farm table. Either would be pretty awesome! So much to be thankful for!img_0567 img_0562 img_0594

He’s SIX

We were so thankful to get to celebrate this easy going, lovable, loud, SIX YEAR OLD this week! I am thankful for this “go with the flow” kid and how he is happy to do whatever, whenever. He makes birthday celebration weeks really simple, sweet and fun!

Thanks Mcree for being an incredible son and brother and so generous with your hugs and words to those around you! You know how to make people feel special!

(These photos were taking on an extremely foggy in front of our favorite gate at our house. I love how so many memories have been captured here!)

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The Many Advantages

There are so many advantages to homeschooling. One being that you can set your own schedule and pace. And when life has moments that you just can’t miss, you can make them happen. Last week my Dad came for a visit. The kids always love being around him. He is such a teacher and I always appreciate his help with lessons. They always learn WAY more than what is on their lesson plan for the day! While he was here, we decided to drive to Stuart, Florida to go visit with his brother in law, who’s wife (my Dad’s sister) just passed away. It was a sweet time to connect with my Uncle and check in to see how he was doing. It was a lot of driving, but a lot of fun too. We visited an oceanographic center and we all LOVED petting and feeding the sting rays. The kids frolicked in the ocean amongst the big waves, and we got to share meals and time together with my sweet Uncle.

I realized I had missed out on knowing my Aunt Joan as I became an adult. They live mostly in Boston and life was just always so full that I didn’t take the time to go. She was a funny, spunky, sweet woman and I can’t imagine what it would be like to lose the love of your life after 60+ years of marriage. There’s so much to learn from that generation, and so much I didn’t know about their life. While our time there was short, I was thankful that I got to see glimpses of their recent adventures together, I am so thankful to have had the time with him.

Thanks Dad for making this possible and for investing in our lives so richly!

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Stay Focused

There are so many things running through my head. So much so that I can’t seem to complete a thought or a task for that matter these days. Does the chicken really keep running around with it’s head cut off as the saying goes? For me it’s more like wondering around trying to figure out what I am supposed to be focused on. That’s how life gets for me when I am out of my routine for too long. With the stretch of the storm cleanup (that is still lingering) and company for several weeks, I am mostly just at a loss. At a loss of what to cook, where to start, or motivated to finish the task. And with the holidays approaching quickly, I need to get this train back on track soon before it completely derails!

Meanwhile, currently in my backyard, somewhere beyond the brush and a bit into the woods, the boys have been digging, and filling holes with water, and creating rivers. Something is happening back there and their focus is amazing. I am a bit envious at their follow through! HA! And to watch this sweet little red headed 3 year old follow after her “boys” into the woods is the cutest thing. Whatever they are doing produces dirt covered faces and wet soggy filthy clothes. To me that is a sign of a good day in childhood!

And as I sit here I can’t even remember what I was going to write about. So I will end this post with a sweet photo of this pretty little girl. Somedays her hair looks as if it’s on fire. And some days, that hair matches her personality!

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Dirt, Guns & Camo

We joke that this little girl can take care of herself. She sure does love to try! She was sporting a backwards camo hat prior to this photo. The life of living with boys! Dirt, guns and camo! img_0106

December Bucket List

It wasn’t even December yet when we went to check a favorite tradition of our Christmas list….THE GINGERBREAD VILLAGE! We are totally inspired to create our own now! Some of the houses were just so intricate and amazing. We took Mimi and Cici along for the fun and at one point I looked over and Gress was taking selfies in front of Mr. and Mrs Claus. Never a dull moment with these crazy kids!img_0769 img_0775 img_0776 img_0779 img_0780 img_0782 img_0787 img_0791 img_0795 img_0797

Boys, Dirt, and Adventure

These 3 boys. They spend most of their afternoons together. My boys usually meet their neighbor friend at the bus screaming for him to come play. Since the storm, there has been much more dirt on our properties and on their bodies. Welcome to boyhood!  This was the neighbor kid that played inside most afternoons. Not anymore! img_0078

And apparently when you play outside most afternoons and stop taking afternoon naps, you are so tired that you fall out of your bed and sleep half way in it. This is how we found Mcree when we went to check on him before we went to bed. img_0081

And just when you thought the storm damage was over, nope….your hanging limbs decide to let loose before the tree guys come and the limb takes out a fence, gate and your whole house generator (that ironically has never been used because to get this thing hooked up has been an ongoing saga for the last year). And because I am trying to be an optimist (which is rare), I am thankful it didn’t take out the house, or the green egg bbq, or a kid! And because we Rad loves adventure the tree climbing kit (yes you read that correctly) just arrived and he will be removing more dead limbs himself. One more task to add to his “man resume” (that list is quite long). Let’s hope that adventure turns out well! img_0084

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