September

There are just a couple days of September left, but she was good to us!

So many new beginnings came this month. The biggest was our oldest heading out of the home a couple days a week for school. She attends Monday and Thursday classes, and works at home the other 3 days.  The classes are challenging and the work load can be intense. It’s a great push for college prep! She writes 2-3 essays per week, which shocked me, but I can see how that is developing her so much.  She got a 100 on her very first essay comparing To Kill A Mockingbird with Pride and Prejudice.

September 26-2015

I’m happy to report that she has 3 A’s and a B in her studies, so far. Algebra 1 is proving to be the nemesis, so I spent my Friday night brushing up on Order of Operations so that I can help tutor. Algebra was never my strong suit, but together we will learn!

I whipped up some breakfast burritos this month to help the morning rush and to feed the kids something that would sustain their bellies until lunch.

Do you guys like vintage Pyrex? I have been scouring antique shops for a set and finally found a pristine collection in the Cinderella series. The pattern I found is one that I remember from childhood. I don’t know who had this pattern, but I remember it in someone’s kitchen. I needed a set of mixing and serving bowls desperately. I was down to one.

September 25-2-2015

Fall began, and so did my Wednesday Night, Mommy Needs a Work Night, Starbucks. That’s the official title.  I’m using this time to catch up restructuring my photography business.  I’ve realized that there are some changes that I need to make that will help protect my over-arching goals and if I can’t do that, then I’ll need to stop.  I don’t want to stop, so it is time to strengthen my backbone in some key areas.

Soccer began again.  It’s a new beginning in that we changed from a beginner’s league to a real rec-league with some rock-star type players.  My boys are a bit outclassed at the moment, but it is pushing them to new heights, which is exactly what they needed. I’ve already seen them digging deeper to develop. We weren’t getting that at the other league after 5 years.  It was a perfect entry point, but it was time to move on.  They are going from 1 practice and game per week to 2 practices, 1 skill camp night, and 1-2 games per week.  They love playing, so we want them to truly develop the skills they need to succeed. They were always the better players at the former league and well, if that’s the case, that’s as far as you develop.  Being with stronger players will only make them stronger.

Homeschooling the boys has been great.  They are growing by leaps and bounds, which makes the schooling enjoyable for all. We are taking school on the road on Mondays while big sis is in classes. That change of environment is just the boost we need to stay revived.

So September, thank you for being a great start.  We are looking forward to the rest of fall and finding the good in it!

Linking with Good.Random.Fun.

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Catching Up

I’m still playing a bit of catch up from the end of summer through this second week of school.  Really, I think it is a bit of catch up combined with a much needed breather from always feeling in go mode. Not that I’m stopping much, but merely having to give a different set of items priority.

That’s why I’m thankful for Instagram that lets me continue to connect with others while blogging has been a back burner item, lately.  I’m looking forward to picking up my camera again and documenting life.  I am excited because I have a couple rolls of never-before-seen summer film ready to go out this week! What a surprise those frames will be.  Truly, I cannot even remember what all I captured.

Meanwhile, a taste of lately…

August 18-2015

I’ve picked up the knitting basket, which is a true sign that fall is on the way.

Dipped DQ cones filled in the always present waiting on the teenager to finish her activity time gap. It’s amazing how much life we parents exchange for our teens to have a life. These activities are all good things and I’m glad that we can give her the time to let her grow in many endeavors. We do make sure to reward the patient younger brothers who have to do a bit of waiting.

My Lemon Queen sunflowers have begun to bloom around the yard.  Sunflowers are so rewarding! I think I will do a bigger planting next year.

And, in heartbreaking news, I’m sure you’ve all heard about the Bangkok bombing this week.  Perhaps it feels like a far off incident to many reading this, but to me, it feels quite personal. Bangkok holds a very near and dear place in my heart.  If you are new here, you may not know that my family lived and worked there for 8 years.  Bangkok is also the birthplace of each of my children. While no one place in the world has more significance than another, this bombing stings a little. More than a little, actually.  It angers me and I hope it is a righteous anger. I can envision the exact place, the exact time, the sights, sounds, and the people.  I have stood in that place and passed by many, many times.  For me, it isn’t about the place, but the people.  So my heart goes out to this second home for me.  This evil incident reminds me to keep praying for a place and people that I love. As far as I’m hearing, all of my Bangkok connections are safe.  For that, I’m very thankful.

Linking this week with Randomosity, Wednesdays Around the World, and Black and White Wednesday.

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Little Things Thursday

Welcome back to Little Things Thursday. Once again, the week has gotten away from me. We’ve been in Back to School prep mode here. Yep, we are one of those weird states that goes back to school in early August.

So, we’ve been spending our days shopping for pencils and notebooks. The school room has been tidied and I’m fiercely guarding it lest someone musses it up. I think I’ve said, “Touch nothing” several times. Our big haul of books arrives today, I hope! Nothing like 4 days to go to dig into the curriculum. It’s not my first time at the rodeo with either the 3rd or 5th grade programs, so it should be old hat. Gracyn doesn’t officially start her hybrid school until after Labor Day, but she does have a paper due the very first day. It is a comparison paper in which she will compare Pride and Prejudice with a book she read last year…TBD. She will work on this while the boys are in school.

august 5 2015

New bedding was a surprise this week. I rolled over in bed one night and heard the sheets rip. They weren’t super old, but ripped nonetheless. And any old excuse to update everything would do, so I did. I just love neutrals, and went that direction. I love the calm of a simple color palate.

Gracyn is back on Doggie Day Care duty with Harls. Harley’s mom is a teacher and has already gone back to work, so we get to play a bit with this guy during the school year. Our Pomston, Rosie, is sweet on him. Harley acts nonplussed, but he enjoys her attention.

And finally, Curly Sue decided to let the hair stylist flat iron her hair for kicks. She looks so pretty, but we love her curls, too. She is looking like a 9th grader here and I’m not sure I like that too much. This year is definitely going to be one of many transitions, but I have faith that it will be good.

How’s the rest of your summer shaping up?


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The summer that was…

Hard. Summer was hard. I’m not one to dwell on negativity, because really, there is just so much of that in the world. But, I’m learning that acknowledging the hard things doesn’t have to be negative. It can be good for the soul. I think we call it processing, don’t we?

This summer was a season where the pressure to have fun was overwhelming. Maybe you can relate. This summer was one where my husband and I were only able to focus on building what was right in front of us. Our work efforts required everything we had. It was time to dig deep and slog through many battles and fun was just not going to be a reality for us no matter how much we “needed” it. And that was hard. If I’m honest, it was pretty stinky to be on the outside looking in. I had a pity party or two. Or three.

End of Summer 2015-1

We had to make due with simple pleasures and our summer was probably similar to the summers we had as kids. There was no pressure to keep up with everyone else’s adventures and stuff back in the day. Kids played outside. They had a Popsicle or two. They went to the pool occasionally. And they were happy. The end.

But, this summer I really lost my way in remembering truth. I had to fight for truth. I won. I won because I was able to take my disappointments and refocus them on what really matters. I was able to journal my way through my thoughts and turn them right side up. There is still a twinge of pain lingering over a summer I wouldn’t have chosen, but I recognize those old familiar feelings and speak truth to them a little more quickly these days.

End of Summer 2015-2

My kids? They had a fun summer. They played outside. They had a Popsicle or two. They went to the pool occasionally. And they were happy. The end. Actually, our oldest had a blast youth grouping all summer long. So her tank should be extra full.

While I am in many ways in need of a grand do-over, I am thankful that school begins again next Monday. School is the great equalizer and we all suffer together. LOL.

Our work loads won’t be any less, but I feel that I have a better grasp on what I need to do to build a solid foundation for the year ahead. It still requires digging deep and slogging through some things, but as our fortune cookies so wisely put it: Your investments of time now will lead to success later. You will make many changes before settling satisfactorily. <— This, yes this.

Those aren’t “fortunes”, but just some good old common sense with truth that rings through. I needed the reminders that none of this summer was in vain. No matter how stinky it felt at times. I am better for walking the valley. We all are if we look at the valley as a teaching ground rather than something to avoid. Comfort, while good, is not always a friend.

This morning as I was flicking through Instagram I was blessed with another great reminder which simply said: Steady Construction, Not Hasty Assembly. (Thank you Little Bit Funky) So often we want life to be an Ikea flat pack on the road to we are going. Very often, that’s just not how things work. I would love this in a frame to hang because wow, that is exactly how I need to approach this coming year. Steady construction. In all things.

I’m thankful for those that cheered me on the sidelines with those quiet don’t give up calls, and for those even louder ones that jarred me straight back to the construction zone. Oh, how I need that.

I’m praying for a fruitful season ahead, because I need that, too.

Linking with Good.Random.Fun.

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Little Things Thursday

Hello, strangers.  Well, that’s how it feels since I have had to pull back on blogging the last week or so.  I can only keep up with one post a week right now, but thank you for still connecting here, meanwhile. I’m trying to give myself permission to take care of all the pressing things so I can get back to a regular routine soon. I’ve gotta have it together by a week from Monday, so I’m almost there.

I’ve been swamped with preparing for our new school year, and working my photography business.  I’m just in a stage where the devil is in the details. I just need those around me to say that it is okay for these things to take time to complete. I can be such a hamster on a wheel. I forget that most things are a process and not a run into the ground race.

Enough about that though, because I have a girl to celebrate! Yesterday, Gracyn turned 14! I could lament the years here, but you moms already know. It goes quickly.

And she got a phone.

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She’s pretty pleased about the phone situation. We’ve been one of the last hold out parents of kids her age. There are still a few others, but we were definitely in the minority. I don’t regret waiting, but feel that now is the time with high school on the very near horizon. I just need to be able to reach my kid.  It’s more for me than her. So, it’s definitely a little thing bringing much happiness around here. Her dad and I are cool after all.

How’s your week going, friends?


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Summer Scenes

Summer is waning here in the deep south, and I don’t think I can talk about it much.  I’m in denial.

There is still so much to fit in in these 3+ weeks until school begins again.  I’m just not mentally ready! But, meanwhile here are a few summer scenes as we seek to soak it all in.

July 1-13 2015

The kids are getting their summer tanks full, it seems. It doesn’t take more than long days playing on our street, snow cones, pool days, and youth group events to keep them happy.

I think we will keep doing these simple things for the rest of the summer. I hope your summer is full of happy!

Linking with Good.Random.Fun.

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You win some, You lose some

This week I’m on the lose some plan. I have kind of busted up my knee with my overzealous walking and running. Turns out, I’m not 23 anymore.

mid-may 2015

I’ve been on modified rest for 4-5 days. I’m not quite sure what my injury entails, but it is on both sides of my knee, seemingly in the medial area. I’m able to run a few errands and I thought I’d try walking yesterday with the aid of KT tape, but I was unable to do that.

I’m resting up today because I’m photographing a precious little wedding tomorrow.  It’s all elevation, ice, and Netflix for today.  I’ve got to be mobile tomorrow.

Still, there are winning moments like ice cream, boba tea, Pad Thai, and binge watching Korean dramas.

I haven’t been able to capture much else this week due to immobility, but I do hope to be back on my feet soon.  Little Things Thursday will run as scheduled! Hope to see you there.

Linking with Wednesdays Around the World.

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Easter

I hope you had a wonderful Easter/Passover this past week!

Easter 2015

We had a good week that started with Maundy Thursday celebration at our church. We combined a little bit of Passover in our time of worship. Each table had baskets of unleavened bread, bitter herbs and oil, and honey to sample during fellowship.

Friday was Gracyn’s interview and exam for Konos Academy.  She is in! We knew that she had a seat already, and the interview was a formality to get to know us better.

Saturday was soccer.  The two male footballers played aggressive games and scored multiple times.

Yesterday we donned our best for Easter services.  All the men wore bow ties.  We came home to enjoy a very southern Easter meal of ham, potato salad, macaroni and cheese, and southern style green beans.  We will eat ham this and that the rest of the week.

We are taking a semi-spring break this week.  I am hoping to get caught up on a few things to start our push to the end of the year.  We have 30 school days left on the calendar!!

This is our good.ramdom.fun for last week!

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Insta-Fun

We’ve had a pretty good start to February around here. While life has been pretty mundane and steady, there is still so much beauty to be found in the ordinary. Feb1-15

There has been joy in the little things like Popsicles from the ice cream truck, friendship with our pets, and oils to help us sleep well after long days.

New recipes were tried, doodles were practiced, and gifts reminded us of how truly blessed/inspired we are by our friendships.

Knitting continued, new skills were learned in school, and coffee has stayed warm to see me through our school mornings without having to visit the microwave multiple times.  This, my friends, is a huge boon to my mornings.

Even though the month is still fresh, we have experienced so much encouragement already!

Now if we could just manage to squeeze one snow day in this month, we would truly be cheered. It’s not looking too likely, but you just never know!

It’s all Good.Random.Fun.

 

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Little Things Thursday

Welcome back to Little Things Thursday! I’ve been a little MIA this week on the blog. I’m right in the peak of busy season with fall family sessions. I’ve been glued to my computer screen this week with edits so that clients can order their prints and Christmas cards.  I haven’t even edited my own Halloween photos from last Friday. I can’t miss sharing something in the general time frame, so I guess Instagrams will suffice.

halloween14-1 halloween14-2

This year we had a Batman Jr., Ironman, and an huntress turned Elf. We collected more candy than we need, and one little superhero has been sneaking more than his two piece a day limit. 55 wrappers were found stuffed in his pumpkin. Whoops! I almost don’t care so that we can get rid of it faster.

Well, edits and print orders are still waiting on me tonight. I’ll be visiting shortly!

Link up with Little Things Thursday: Link Back, Grab your permalink, Link up and Mingle!


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