Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas!

No snow for Christmas this year in Wisconsin - in fact it was super warm the day after we didn't even need our jackets. We bought a real tree this year...after two years of artificial we were just not loving the idea-besides the lights burned out in one of the sections which made the decision that much easier to revert back.

Here are some of the fun memories we had...

Savannah performing with Show Choir

Our front room before Christmas exploded - the kids did most the decorating and did a good job!

Savannah and I decorated this gingerbread house while watching Rudolph. She had a few Littlest Pet Shop friends visiting as you can see. The frosting bag was super hard to squeeze and I didn't have the strength in my hands to help her like I normally would due to HM issues, so there wasn't any snow at this house either LOL. (BTW this had to be protected from the dogs reach, however the day after Christmas we found it on the floor with the roof missing.)

I just love looking at the stockings hung on the mantle!

Savannah as the "narrator" in the church play

Savannah didn't know I took this picture, we were waiting for our church program to start and as she saw us sitting behind her, she stuck her tongue out at Jake as she often does. Sibling rivalry. Heh.

Here she is with her school's "winter" concert. (I call it the Christmas concert however, society seems to be evolving this time of year to "holidays" or "winter" but not around me.) We were way up in the balcony so this was a pretty good shot considering she didn't know I was trying to take a picture. 

Here are both 5th grade classes -  when seeing them next to the kindergartners it reminded me of them when they were in 1st grade. Next year they will all be in middle school. Boo to growing up!

We went to the Botanical Garden to see the lights...no snow on the ground but it was still pretty. Afterward we stopped for Starbucks. It was a great new memory...maybe even the start of a new tradition.

They are a botanical garden so I think they felt inclined to have the lights reflect what you'd see in the summer time. We still have yet to go in the summer time...but we will!

This was very pretty. Reminded me of the movie Frozen.

We had a visitor spend the week at our house. Sassy is our friend's dog and she was very energetic (as it was her first Christmas-yes she is a pup) and loved attention.

Ha. Ma and Pa and Muffers (against her will I might add)

Savannah was so excited to give Jake her present to him. They are remote controlled bumper cars - they enjoy playing with them together. I think it was a good idea and she was very clever to find something that he and she could do to spend time together. 

I often look back at years past and remember how sad and depressed I'd get after Christmas was over...it is interesting now that I have Christ truly in my heart that I don't get these feelings any longer. Out of everything during this time of year I am so grateful for the gift God gave to us of His Son. For without it we would have no Hope.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Our little girl isn't so little any more!

Yep, it is getting more and more official every day. In big and small things. Our little girl isn't so little any more.
Here is Savannah's room before...
Yep, way back...

...then of course we had The Little Mermaid phase for a while.

And here is Savannah's room today. She picked the bedding, the rugs, and the curtains. The only thing we didn't do yet was paint...which I am hoping to do next year. We'd been talking for a while now that Savannah was getting too big for her bed and needed new furniture so when we finally had the money in the budget well that kind of made it a rush decision. We were able to find this used furniture for a great deal so we bought it right away and didn't really have time to paint.

As far as the small things go? I was reflecting back to the day Charlie cried when we bought Savannah her first Happy Meal. And just the other day I cried because she ordered her last.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Meuer Farm Day

Saturday we drove about an hour into farm country to spend the day with the Girl Scout Troop 4109. We started out taking a hayride and then had fun getting lost in the corn maze. The weather was absolutely gorgeous and the farm was near Lake Winnebago - which I forgot to get a picture of. :(

Waiting for the hayride.

Here's an old creek on the farm property that is older than dirt - the farmer says it has crayfish in it. This would be fun to have in the back yard don't ya think?

They have a grove of Black Walnut trees. They looked pretty dead but this is because they fall early in autumn but bloom early in spring. We learned that the trees poison the soil and no other type of tree can grow in with them. I don't think I've ever eaten a Black Walnut.

We sat under these trees for a while as the farmer told us about the maple they collect. It takes 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of syrup. Wow!

Savannah found a lady bug on the wagon.

Here is the side of the farm where they have the pumpkin patch and the slide for the kids. There was also a corn shoot where people could aim to hit targets (including the car) win string cheese.

Savannah's gettin' as tall as the corn these days.

Found this guy on one of the trails in the maze. 

Daddy and Savannah had fun answering all the clues that were given for the maze. We picked the scriptural Q&A clues. I think we did pretty good.

We had a lot of fun. I am happy to have made such fun memories. Happy Fall!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Beautiful Life

I just love the fall weather...well at least after I have finished grieving over summer. Here in Wisconsin it is so beautiful because of all the large trees everywhere you look. I don't have to go up the mountains to see them - they are right in my own neighborhood!

Autumn is also my birthday time and I am feeling so loved today with the showering of gifts. My husband and kids cleaned the house from top to bottom, it is sparkling clean. They even mopped the floor! So I am relishing in this time I have on my hands and enjoying just blogging which what used to be more of an every day occurrence for me I rarely make the time for any more.

Isn't life as beautiful as the colors God has given us?

Playing ball at the school playground

Bear loves to people watch!

Savannah is learning the United States this year in 5th grade. We played a game where I would jump on them and she would call their name out. Some of them we didn't even know!

I just love the fireworks of fall time!

On the way home from the playground

Savannah is learning the violin this year

I noticed a bright yellow light shining into our house this afternoon and wondered where it came from. When I went outside I found the reflection of the sun on the bright yellow leaves of the Aspen tree in front of the garage to be the reason why. So beautiful! As you can see we are in the process of planning for next spring to put in new landscaping on the left side in front of the garage where the raggedy bushes used to be. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

New Season, New Changes

It seems the change of the season is coming abruptly what with all the cold weather we've had these past couple days. We've moved the thermostat from cool to heat and have been using our winter blankets on our bed. Life is changing all around us too. In fact when it does, it feels like it happens all at once doesn't it?

Charlie was promoted at work to a new position - one that he was promised to have when we moved here four years ago. He will be managing a large system that tracks inventory and preventative maintenance on all equipment for the company. One day hopes to take it to a regional level for all locations so that they are all maintaining the same system throughout the company. He is also taking over for someone who left in helping with some of the plans for our new church. This in addition to getting back on the Praise and Worship team, he will be busy for a while.

I have been promoted to a Sales Coordinator at my job. Instead of providing support for the Service Department, I will be helping with Sales. I will be doing a lot of quotes, ordering equipment, and maintaining Lease Documents. While I am excited and look forward to it, I have also had a rough time during this the transition. I was diagnosed last month with Fibromyalgia related to Hypermobility Syndrome. For over a year I have not felt well and thought I was just going through something that would pass. As time went on the symptoms never improved and I kept pushing which in turn made things worse. Fatigue and pain were overcoming my life and I think I had one month free of any notable symptoms this year. Now that I have a diagnosis however I know how to treat it and am learning to live with it. This means no staying up late at night and making sure I take life slower than I am used to - watch my body posture and identify when I am over-extending my joints. The key for me now is to identify what causes flare ups and to avoid them.

Savannah is in her last year of Elementary School. This is really hard for me. My last child and my only daughter. I often think to myself it is the end of a stage of motherhood I'll never have back. That I am now going to be a mother of a young lady and two young men. No more babies, no more toddlers, no more children but young adults. Here in Wisconsin they start Middle School in the 6th grade so I have never had to deal with this quite so early. Why don't I embrace this? Why don't I feel ready yet? What is holding me back? Let's just put it this way. I am dealing with it best I can. I have feelings inside myself I need to reconcile with and soon so that I can be the mother they need not the mother I want.

Jake and Sasha are celebrating their first year anniversary this weekend in Madison. They really make a cute couple and I had hoped to have Sasha and her mother over for a BBQ before it got too much colder but life was busy. We'll have to see, maybe a Thanksgiving invitation will work.

Harmony, my granddaughter, is growing from what I can see in the pictures and Michael and Elisia are working things out. I am so happy for this - it is so important for the children and for them. Michael has been doing very well with finding out who he is and how to overcome obstacles. I am so grateful that he has Elisia as a partner in his life.

Our dog Pugsley is approaching her last year with us. She has become almost paralyzed in her hind quarters and is having trouble staying on her feet. While she isn't in pain she does have limited mobility and many accidents and we know what comes next before things get too much worse. We are enjoying what time we have left with her and making sure she knows she is loved.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Saying goodbye to Summer

Mom visited end of August and spent Labor Day weekend with us in Galena. The weather was good all but a few days of rain but it was warm at least.

Waiting for the Trolley Tour

One of the Victorian Mansions - so much history! We found out that if you live in a home there you must have prior approval to change any of the outside construction as the city is protected as a Federally Historically Preserved site. They want to maintain the look and feel of history in the town.

We had a lot of fun just being together and going shopping along Main Street. Here we stopped for a bite to eat at a cool sandwich shop.

The last day she was here we went to a new place called Whitefish Dunes State Park. The beach there at Lake Michigan was so beautiful that day. The water was high from all the rain.

The water was a bit chilly but that didn't stop Savannah of course!

There were Monarch butterflies all around the area, Charlie was even able to catch one for Savannah but it didn't care to stay around long. I love Monarch butterflies.

This was probably the last warm day of the year is my guess. It was absolutely gorgeous! 

We miss mom and are glad she was able to come and visit. What a nice way to end the Summer.

Saturday, August 02, 2014

It's done!

We will be having our first BBQ on the restored deck today! They really did a great job and Charlie added a nice flair with the lights on the posts don't you think?


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Texas Girl

Savannah flew to Texas in July for a two week visit to spend some time with Grandma Sue and Grandpa Bob. She wasn't scared at all - but of course I worried the whole time. Here are some pictures she came home with:

Grandma meeting Savannah at arrival at the airport

First night in Texas - she can't stop smiling!

There was a mamma bird's next outside the porch

The babies hatched a few days later

Playing at Chuck E Cheese

Having fun at the aquarium

Savannah and Jaden at the zoo.

I love this shot!

Savannah fishing

Playing ball at the pool with Grandma