Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Family Night

We decided to start having official family nights. At first we were going to do Sundays but have since switched it to Mondays. What this means for our family is that there will be nothing electronic used in our house that evening. Which means no computer, no tv,  no video games, and no movies. It ensures that we spend quality time with each other and with our children.

On our first Family Night we played candy land and guess who. Then moved on to coloring together at the kitchen table. Here are some pics of our fun night.

Kiara's before and after pics. She is really honing that coloring skill of hers

 Silly Daddy's before and after photo's.

Mommy's (almost finished) picture

The table gets a little cluttered but its so sweet to have us all together at the table!

 Our second Family Night was at Incredible Pizza. Where we had the buffet for dinner and spent a hour playing video games together. Unfortunately my camera is a lot of maintenance in a place like this so there is no photo's of our fun.

I'm looking forward to next Mondays Family Night. Does anyone have any fun ideas for it?

Friday, September 16, 2011

14 weeks old

I can hardly believe it was a entire 14 weeks ago that I gave birth to my second beautiful baby girl. These few months have just flown by!

Up until now Kayla has had almost a perfectly clean bill of health. (besides the yucky head cold that mommy gave to her this week.) And for that we are so thankful. I am one who often thinks about how a lot of people, including me, take for granted the health they are blessed with each day. So each day I do my best to thank the Lord for waking each member of my family up that day and for blessing us with our health.

Here are a few highlights of the past month.

1. Kiara started pre-K homeschooling on Sept 6th. We review the alphabet, our numbers 1-20, and practice writing them. Then we do a learning activity. And we review the verse and activities from Awana's that week. Also every Thursday we get together with our good friends Molly, Asa, and Emmett to do a group lesson.   We've missed a day or two of the formal setting (our kitchen table) due to mommy and baby sis being sick but overall it seems to be a good start.

2. I've got to craft... a little ;) I made two different types of fabric flowers. I must say this is something that takes time and some practice. I'm a bit of a perfectionist so it will be a little while before I begin to be able to sell any of my work. But I'm hoping to at least have some things done for Christmas gifts this year. Now all I have to think of is what to make the boys???

3. My very good friend Ms.Yvonne Lima got married to Mr. D'Angelo Johnson and is now the beautiful Mrs. Yvonne Johnson! I was blessed to be able to hang out with her and her wedding party during the day and witness the preparation for such a blessed event.

4. My father had surgery on his shoulder and is making his recovery at home. There was a lot of pain the day he got the surgery and the nerve block they gave him did not work but with lots of prayers he is managing the pain much better!

and now.... on to the pictures

Kiara's old way of coloring on the right and her new way of coloring on the left. She is getting so good!!! look at how well she stays in the lines. Now we just have to work on color choices ;)

Really loving those hands

Sisterly love!
She loves posing

I adore her smile

she looks like she's up to something!

How could I ever resist kissing this sweet face???!

I'll end this post with the Psalm I've been attempting to memorize...

Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord
And on His law he meditates day and night.
He is like a tree planted by a streams of water
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither
Whatever he does prospers. 

Not so the wicked!
they are like chaff that the wind blows away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, 
nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.
For the Lord watches over the way of the righteous
but the way of the wicked will perish.
                                                                   Psalm 1:1-6

Friday, September 2, 2011

How do I say goodbye?

Some 28 years ago is when Nancy Lauritzen began babysitting me as a 6th month old baby.

And that is when I met her daughter, my very best friend... Chrissi Lauritzen.

I write this blog with tears in my eyes because for the first time in all those years I have to say "goodbye"... As this beautiful women has decided to move out to her dream state, Colorado.

 From what I can remember Chrissi and I were pretty much inseparable growing up. I don't remember exactly how long Nancy babysat me but I was always at her house. To this day it still feels like my second home. I could tell you countless stories of pool parties, barbies, and staying up late during sleepovers.

Here's a few of them...

We lived in a small town growing up (Nevada, IA) which meant it was safe and we were allowed a lot of freedom. Well with freedom always came responsibility. So frequently we were asked to run up to fareway for Nancy to pick up a few items, it was only two blocks away.
Well on this particular day she need quite a few items. It was a hot summers day so after exiting the store, with both our arms loaded with grocery sacks, I decided to drink my chocolate milk I'd bought. Well if one thing in this life is for sure, its that Chrissi and I love to laugh. So the next thing I knew I was busting a gut and shot chocolate milk out my nose. All over my white overalls. This spiraled the laughter out of control. I peed my pants (still wearing those WHITE overalls)!!!. Mortified, as pee is running down the sidewalk in front of fareway, I set down the two arms full of groceries in front of Chrissi, left her there and ran back to her house. Wow how could either of us ever forget that story!!!

To say that Chrissi and I LOVED playing with barbies would be a understatement. Well one birthday of hers we were at a park in a enclosed shelter celebrating her with a party. This party was equipped with the norm. lots of kids, cake and gifts. After she had opened all her gifts (including barbies of course) everyone headed outside for some sort of event. At that time is when Chrissi and I decided it would be more fun to go back in the shelter by ourselves and play with the barbies!  Yes the birthday girl left her own party. Needless to say her parents were not thrilled when they discovered we were not among the other kids and promptly made us return outside. We just didn't understand why it wasn't ok to play with the barbies instead???

I can't count the number of times we pleaded, bagged and bargained to have sleepovers. We'd do ANYTHING, housework, yard work, back rubs, ANYTHING if Nancy would just say "yes"! And most of the time she did ;)
Several of these nights we'd stay up late giggling in bed for hours. We'd get a first warning, a second warning and even sometimes a third warning. But quite often in order for us to be quiet and go to sleep meant being separated.

The amount of memories I have with this women is amazing. I'll make a list...

1. Swimming countless hours in her above ground swimming pool.

2.Getting in trouble for dripping water from our suits all over the house.

3. Going to fareway to get their large used boxes to make forts in the back yard

4. Playing barbies EVERYWHERE in and outside the house

5. Giggling in bed for hours

6. Her parents asking her to complete a chore, her complaining, until I said lets just do it and get it over with, her getting mad when her parents said "ya do what April said".

7.Standing in the corner for disobeying, on top of those old fashion floor vents

8. Snuggling on the couch with her mom
Or should I say torturing her mom on the couch

9. Going up to the bank and eating their free cookies

10. Riding bikes and wiping out

11.Eating dinner with her and her family

Nancy and Greg

12. Buying groceries from fareway

13. Giving her mom back rubs as a bribe or for a little spending cash

14. Going into the attic and being scared silly by the bats

15. Playing with her mom's make-up in front of her big vanity

16. Telling on her big brother when we thought he was being mean

17. Her family teasing me because I always made a "yuuuummmmm" sound when I ate

18. When she stood by my side and video taped the birth of my first daughter Kiara

19. When she taught me how to hula hoop

20.  When she was a bridesmaid in my wedding

Even being a complete goof she's beautiful!

21. Her younger sister was my wonderful wedding photographer!
The beautiful Becky!
22. How I'll always know which gift is from her at any given event because she is the only one who still cares enough and takes the time to, not only wrap gifts but add a little something extra like ribbons. And it takes scissors to get the gift open ;)

For my twenty first birthday, see look at the feathers on that gift wrapping!

23. And most importantly going to church with her as a child.

Here are my top Five things I love about this women...

1. She knows how to laugh and make others laugh

We randomly ran into each other at Sam's Club which is quite odd seeing how we live 45min. away from each other.

So we decided to take random funny pic of us holding large quantities of frozen goods!

2. She LOVES her family
Chrissi crochet this wonderful blanket for me.

And then made it even more special by taking these pics!

3. She has always been there for me no matter the circumstances

4. She has a giving heart.

5. She's family! Its doesn't matter how long we go without seeing one another. When we get together its like we were never apart.

making tie dye shirts

Chrissi's family were the first people to share Christ with me. They took me to their church in Ames and to bible camp one year. That year at camp was the first time I remember knowing who Christ was and accepting Him into my heart. They planted the seed that the Lord has watered in my heart all these years. And for that I will be forever grateful to the Lauritzen family!

Now the question is... How do I say "goodbye"???

Well I guess I don't.
Like I said earlier, Chrissi is family, in all meanings of the word. Here on earth and as a sister in Christ in heaven. And no matter how long were apart we'll always be a part of each others lives. So I'll never really say goodbye.

Chrissi I love you so much. And I pray the Lord guides your path and is a light to your feet. XOXO