Happy birthday!

Big things are happening here.  A boy turned six.  And got a bicycle!  Six years ago, we welcomed a second son into our family, and he has brought much love and mischief into our lives.  He is an amazingly practical little guy, always trying to figure things out.  He is sensitive and usually has his emotional antennae poised.  He’s a loyal brother, knowing both the role of little brother and big brother.  Simply, he’s a delight.

We love you, buddy!



Menu Monday

The day is almost over, but I made it back for Menu Monday!  As person who often struggles with follow-through, I consider this a major success.

Last week was vacation Bible school, so the food schedule didn’t go exactly as I had imagined.  A few meals got bumped up; therefore, Sunday’s steak is tomorrow’s dinner.  Here’s the plan:

Monday — Spaghetti and salad

Tuesday — Steak, roasted cabbage, and baked apples

Wednesday — Chicken and veggie pizza

Thursday — Meatball sandwiches and “Mary Salad” (tomatoes, cucumbers, and Italian dressing)

Friday — Spinach salads with chicken, strawberries, and almonds

Saturday — Someone is turning six!!  Birthday party food!

Sunday — leftovers

Somehow Summer


Somehow, it’s summer already.  Somehow, spring slipped by, baseball season came to it’s dramatic end (champions!), and our family vacation came & went.  Now, somehow, we are in the midst of July.  Happy summer weeks are behind us, and about six more stand ahead–bursting with the promise of lightning bugs, cook-outs, popsicles, and trips to the pool.  Somehow, time continues to speed faster with each year, daring to beat it’s own impossible pace.  All we can do is snatch moments into our memories for safe keeping, hoarding them like precious stones.






Menu Mondays

I’m going to try.  I really will!

I’m going to try to post our dinner menu for the week on most Mondays.  I enjoyed doing that when I was completing the 52 week food budget challenge.  The habit pushed me to be creative and consistent in my meal planning.  So here goes…

Monday:  pork chops on the grill, pasta salad, and fresh pineapple

Tuesday:  chicken salad with grapes and pecans on whole wheat buns and sweet potato fries

Wednesday:  tacos and corn on the cob

Thursday:  turkey burgers on whole wheat buns and Grandma Sunny’s bean salad

Friday:  fish (not sure how I’ll prepare it) and wild rice with apricots and pecans

Saturday:  {We’ll be away all day and will probably eat out.}

Sunday:  steak on the grill, roasted cabbage with garlic and lemon, and baked apples

Our Dog: Worth Breaking the Rules

We are not rule breakers.  I guess you could say Cory and I are pretty straight laced.  We don’t sneak into movies, cheat on our taxes, or pretend our child is under five to get the free kid’s meal.

But we did get a puppy out of wedlock.  While I was living in a college-owned apartment.  Gasp!

That sweet pup became our beloved companion.  Hannah moved with us from our college town to Massachusetts, back to our home state, to Florida, and back to our college town.  She was gentle, quiet, and as low maintenance  as any dog could be.  Being a Labrador mix, she did have a pronounced puppy phase during which she barked at every squirrel and bicycle, and she once ate an entire loaf of bread but left the crusts.  She was a treasure.

This morning, Hannah died.  Her health had been declining, but I still feel sucker punched.  I was not ready.  I’m not ready to not see her first thing in the morning.  I’m not ready to not watch her streak up my parent’s back yard looking incredibly like a racing greyhound.  I’m not ready to miss her barks, her brown eyes, her shiny coat.  I want it to be yesterday again when I scratched behind her ear and told her to be good while we went to Grandma and Papa’s house for the day.

We are not rule breakers, but we took a risk and found a friend.

Miss you, Girl.



Spring in a new-to-us House

We moved into our new house in November.  That evening, snow began to fall as our family carried in chairs and pillows and boxes and dishes and books and toys and all the things that make a home.  Winter seemed to begin on that day, even though the calendar wouldn’t be in agreement for several weeks.  We did not see much of our yard this winter.  Each time the snow began to melt and the grass peaked through, a fresh blanket would fall.  As spring approached, we wondered what might pop up in our yard.  Having never seen the property outside of fall and winter, we had little more than a guess based on sadly wintered leftovers from seasons gone by.  So…what did we find here?  What new life finally raised from hibernation?





Spring carries a fun anticipation.  What will pop up next?


Easter 2014

I love Easter, especially when it comes in late April.  The parallel between the natural world and the spiritual celebration is a powerful illustration of the day’s deepest meaning.  The world is coming alive again.  With hints of color in our yard, green popping up, dead things falling away as new life sprouts, I am ready to feel the joy of a different kind of resurrection.  A capital R Resurrection. 

We had a rough winter, and the fresh air and sunshine feels like a perfect balm for a very sore spirit.  The story of Christ conquering death is the good news I need.  Everything is a live again–body, mind, and spirit.  It’s an exciting time, and the Easter weekend was the kind of celebrating that we needed.

Here’s a look…