April 20, 2009

Knights and Princesses

It's that time again. What time you ask? Time to run the birthday gauntlet! All six of the children have birthday's which fall between April and July (2 are even on the same day!)

This last Saturday was the first birthday party of the "season". Each child gets to pick their theme, and my sweet 6 yr old Tony-boy picked Knights and Princesses (well, mommy threw in the princess part).

We try to make birthday parties a big deal but we NEVER go overboard with the cost. Do you have any idea what some people pay for a children's party? The thought makes me tremble. We home-make (is that even a word?) pretty much everything. The kids never seem to mind and usually have fun. But I'll let you be the judge...

We started off by serving lunch. This included easy to make Renaissance fare such as chicken legs and sausage and traditional chips and dip and sandwiches.

And what would a party be without a few games?

The games included Pin the Tail on the Dragon. This was the most simple. We drew a dragon on poster board and then used a piece of green foam (with the sticky back) and cut out tails. The next game was Find the Dragon Egg. This involved a little more prep. We bought tiny toys and made "eggs" out of homemade play dough, hiding a toy inside. We then hid the eggs throughout the house and had the children look for them. Of course, no Knight Party would be complete without a jousting tournament. Boy, was that intense!

It was so much fun the adults got in on it...

After the games we let children make shields (also out of foam) and get their faces painted (courtesy of my two oldest girls)

And, of course, we then went out to the garage to take care of the pinata! (A papermached dragon courtesy of my husband)

Last but not least, we opened presents and partook of the quintessential castle birthday cake

When all was said and done the party cost us under a hundred dollars for priceless memories!

(I couldn't resist throwing this picture in. My poor baby couldn't handle all the excitement)

April 17, 2009

Easter Fun

Getting our family together for any event is always an adventure, but Easter almost always turns out to be the most fun. Each year, on Saturday, our whole family gets together and does an Easter Egg Hunt.

The children are always very patie
nt while the eggs are hidden

Well, most of the time

Sometimes they need a little distraction (my sister does a fabulous gorilla impression)

Then, when they are finally allowed free. They search for hours for lots of candy filled goodness

We all then regroup and partake of the Easter feast
(read: gossip about everyone who isn't there)

Of, course after all that food and candy the kids then have a great time playing together

And the adults, well... the adults

You would expect no less, right?

Don't ya just wish you were a part of my family?

April 2, 2009


Tonight is my darling Kamryn's stage debut. She is playing the part of Sleeping Beauty. If she's anything like her mom- it won't be her last. Zoe also has a part as Jack's Mother. I am so proud of them. I hope to have pictures soon.

So what's going on with the rest of us...

Now that we're all caught up on Greg you may be wondering what is going on with the rest of us. The eviction from our house and the repo of the van were finalized a couple of weeks ago. Thanks to a gracious gift from the church we still have the car and thanks to my awesome sister we have a place to stay. Squeezing a family of 8 into Steff's family of 4 was quite the challenge but I think we've made it work. Greg is away most of the week and Courtney is actually keeping the older two girls for a couple of weeks, so it's just been me and the little ones. At first, when everything began to happen I had a hard time accepting all of it. I honestly thought God was punishing us for something. Fortunately, with prayer and persistence I have come to realize that God is not a punishing God and he truly has a plan for all of this. I have truly been trying to hand over every aspect of my life to God and I have complete faith in His faithfullness. When I was thinking over how to explain this in my blog God gave me this wonderful image. For so long now Greg and I have been like small children putting together an overwhelmingly large puzzle. Constantly frustrated, putting all the wrong pieces together, and ultimately at times just plain giving up. God, however, is the ever diligent parent who- in our frustration- offers his help, shuffles all the pieces, and invites you to begin putting the puzzle back together with his help. That is exactly how I feel right now. That the puzzle I have worked so hard to put together has been taken apart, re- evaluated, and now, with alittle help, all of the pieces are being put back in the right place this time. So, for those who want to feel sorry for us- don't- we don't feel sorry for ourselves. We look at this as God getting his opportunity to put things back together for us.

Finding His Bliss

For those of you who haven't heard Greg landed the job as a correctional officer in Huntsville. The job entails 5 weeks of intensive training and living in on-campus dorms. To say that my husband is loving every bit of it would be an understatement. Right now, he is second in his class of 75 people, if you can believe that! Having him gone for 5 days out of 7 has been kinda weird, especially after having him home (read: up my butt) for two months. He, however, feels like he is in college. I can't help but laugh after I get off the phone with him, because "he has lots of studying to do". I mean, really, your 33 years old. But, whatever makes him happy... and this truly does.
God has truly answered my prayers. I always have very specific prayers and it is truly awe inspiring when God answers them down to the most specific points. For example: my prayer for Greg's job (this is before he lost his job) 1) that he would find a job that truly made him happy and feel worthy 2) that he would find a job that could financially support us 3) that he would find a job that was secure, not according to mom and pop whims 4) that he would be paid a set salary and paid once a month 5) that he would have room for advancement. God answered those prayers down to the smallest detail. Now, I realize that God could have vetoed all of my ideas and I would have been okay with that, but to see our desires line up so obviously with God's if wonderful for us.
Please pray for Greg and his continued success through his training. I'll keep everyone posted...