Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Recipe Group

This is not one of my typical blogs, it's just the easiest way to spread the word about the yahoo group that I have recently formed to share healthy recipies. The goal is to share ways to use lots of whole grains and other healthy items in recipes that our families will like. It's only been a few days since it started. If you would like to join, just click on the Yahoo groups button to the right of this column. (You can also join by clicking this link if that one malfunctions )If you have never joined a yahoo group before, it's really easy and you may get addicted to them lol.
tip: You can recieve email updates for each post to the group or a daily digest. Once your account is set up and approved you can go to Edit membership and select "daily digest" to recieve a once a day update w/ all activity from that day.
Feel free to spread the word to friends and family who might also be intersted.
I'll update w/ a real blog soon...maybe...

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

crazy, hazy, lazy days of summer

I can't believe how fast this summer is going! It boggles my mind that it is already the end of July!!!! I guess it is very true that time flies when you're having fun. We've been keeping busy with lots of summer activities and celebrations and we have many more in store for the month of August. Somewhere in the hustle and bustle I have managed to organize most of the curriculum for next year for Isabella and Isaac. I am going to write my Letter of Intent to homeschool and send Isabella's portfolio from last year for approval. Although it's summer vacation we have enjoyed plenty of learning experiences and Isabella has kept up with a summer workbook too. We have, of course, been doing tons of reading too. Some of my favorite childhood memories are of getting lost in a good book in the shade on a hot summer day. It's been fun to plant those memories in my children too as we read together daily. Isabella reads so much that sometimes I have to remind her to go play!
We've done so many things over the past few weeks. I'll just give you a little taste.

Isaac took this picture of our plentiful flat of strawberries. They were so yummy!

There is nothing like good weather, good friends and good berries on a lovely summer day!

We picked over 12 lbs of berries. I thought they would last us a little while but after strawberry muffins, strawberry salsa, strawberry honey jam, smoothies and just plain munching them, they were gone in no time!!

The Roach family party was a long awaited event for us. At Christmas my aunt Kathy invites us to a picnic that she puts on at my mom's house. This is not just any picnic. It's a fully catered event complete with bounce house, talent show and fireworks! (well the town supplies the fireworks we just did it on the right day!)

Ian had an unnatural excitement over these cheese balls. He asks me to buy them in the store all the time so I finally did for the picnic and for 2 days he told everyone that he was going to eat cheese balls at the family party...and eat cheese balls he did!
Angela had this incredible cake made for me for my birthday! Trish did an amazing job. I loved having a cake made for me. Only someone who has made cakes knows how much time, effort and thought goes into a cake like this. I was blessed to pieces over my delicious rainbow cake. Trish's buttercream frosting rocks!
There are many talented people in my family and we had lots of music and entertainment during our talent show. Madilynn stole the show though when she sang and clapped for herself! It was too cute!

We are able to see the fireworks from my parents yard so we spread out our blankets, got out our glow sticks and had a blast! I was the lucky auntie who got to hold Madi for her first fireworks display. She loved it! My kids loved them this year too, it was the first year that no one was scared at all.

So the day after the party I officially turned 30. I wondered, leading up to the big day, how I would actually feel. I had jokingly said a few weeks before that I wasn't going to turn 30 and would be giving up all birthdays from here on out to stay 29. I have always been the youngest of all of my friends who are in their 30's and 40's. Being in my 20's made me feel extra young but it was all coming to an end...soon i would be in my 30's and that just didn't seem as young to me. Anyway, the morning of my birthday I woke up and curled up with my Bible and journal for my daily quiet time and evaluated how I felt. I began to cry with thankfulness for all that I have in only 30 years; an amazing husband, 3 beautiful kids, a tremendously loving family, a great house, friends galore, thriving ministries; the list went on and on. A day that I thought might be a little melancholy as I left my 20's behind for good was instead filled with joy and thankfulness to the God who has blessed me beyond words in the last 30 years. I can't wait to see what the next 30 hold in store!

After a whirlwind weekend of berries, birthdays and bashes we had a few days to recuperate and get ready for 4th of July weekend! We went to my mom's for a night and had a special picnic at my friend Jen's house. It was a little reunion of sorts for a few of us girls that grew up together. Between the 5 of us we now have 11 kids! They were so cute all gathered around Jen's table. After going home and putting the kiddos to bed, we mom's got together later just to chat and catch up. It was a great evening. I can't wait to do it again.

We were a little sad that we wouldn't be with my family for the 4th to participate in the bike and doll carriage parade. It has been a tradition since Bella was 1. Instead we celebrated up here and went to one of the biggest 4th of July parades in the country! It was over 2 hours long! There were tons of floats and even some giant balloons.

Later that day we were invited to a picnic at our friends house and we had such a great time. The food was so yummy and we got to go on a boat ride in the afternoon. The kids even got to drive. In the evening we filled the boat to it's limit and went out to watch the fireworks on the water. It was so beautiful. They were going off all around us and reflecting off the water. I felt so blessed to live in such a beautiful part of our beautiful country.

It was a picture perfect 4th of July moment w/ the stars and stripes waving in the background.

The fun just continued all weekend as we went to a picnic at Jay's dad's house the next day. The rain didn't stop us from having a great time. The kids loved swimming int he rain and it cleared up enough for us to play a few games and win some prizes too! Grammy Chris sure knows how to put on a party. The "make your own sundae" spread that she puts out is unmatched. The kids (and grown ups) love making ooey gooey concoctions. It's a good thing we had a potato sack race to burn off some of those calories!

Not long after the 4th my cousin Mona came to visit!!!! I haven't seen her almost 3 years. I can't even tell you how excited we all were to see her and her beautiful children. Growing up together Mona and I always had a very special bond. It has grown even stronger over the years as we now share a strong faith in God and not only love and support one another, as we always have, but also pray for each other and encourage each other with God's Word. I had been waiting to give her a hug for so so long and it was so wonderful to finally get the chance. Watching our kids play together and get to know each other has been such a joy. I wish she'd never leave...

For now they are still here and I can't wait to see them again. We've got some more fun adventures on the horizon. I'll be bloggin' away again in no time!