"Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to let you in."

-- Robert Frost

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

eliza's baptism

July 22 was a pretty special day filled with some pretty special promises for Eliza.

We believe that at the age of eight, a child is well on their way to understanding the difference between right and wrong choices. 

It's considered the age of accountability and though there's still lots and lots to learn, its a time when one becomes responsible for their own decisions and mistakes and has an adequate ability to back up, apologize, change and try a little harder to be a little better.

Eight is great ... and that's when baptism takes place and those commitments are really put into effect. 

Saturday was her big day and that girl radiated like a light.

And who wouldn't with these fantastic grandparents come all the way to celebrate with her?

And a brother who came down from college, too. He, also, received the priesthood allowing him to stand as a witness in her baptism and participate in the circle for her confirmation.

I sure love this great dad who loves this girl more than anything and helped her through it all.

There are some mental pictures I really don't want to forget.

We live in a small church congregation and after Eliza came out of the font and we were drying and changing in the women's bathroom, her two little best friends poured in and grabbed her hands and jumped up and down hugging her.

It was such a sweet moment.

In the quiet after they stepped out, I hugged her and she glowed at me saying she felt lighter than ever before.

I love that girl and her radiant spirit.

Friends from our church gathered to celebrate at our home afterward. Each and every one are like family and I'm so grateful for them.

What a special day and a special girl. Her choices to celebrate the light of Christ in her actions every day make her shine.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

charlotte at five

I think there's some kind of general rule that says babies born in July must be firecrackers.

Cuz this one sure is.

I'm having a hard time wrapping my brain around my baby being five. That means she'll head off to our elementary school's required full day of kindergarten.

She's ready.

I'm not.

Charlotte greets every day with her own list of exciting adventures to check off her fun list.

I can hardly keep up.

She's earned the nickname "hot sauce" around here because she's fearless and adventuresome and crazy and fun all at the same time.

I'm not sure there is anyone that I know who is drinking from the well of life like this one is.

And yet, she has a perfect balance of taking the time to notice and be still and tap creativity.

Kind of like a super human. We joke that she is every best quality of every family member rolled into one spectacular being.

Definitely the icing on our cake.

She couldn't have been more excited for this big day.

And to be celebrated. We were scattered far and wide so, thanks to modern technology, we gathered to sing and blow out candles.

Don't let those facetime faces fool you ... that's their waiting-for-mom-to-use-her-inept-technology-skills-to-bring-it-all-together look.

We sure love our little hot sauce. She lights up our life.

And she's five. So she knows everything. All the time. Just ask her.

Happy Birthday, Charlotte!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

july fourth

Can we just have this day over and over again?

That's what sleepy Charlotte asked as I tucked her into bed last night and I couldn't agree more.

The Fourth of July is probably my favorite holiday. Good food, good friends and a heart filled with gratitude for freedom and a country where we enjoy every minute of it.

Grant started off our day with a spectacular pancake breakfast put on by our local scout troop. 

These boys did a pretty awesome job serving nearly 575 hungry folks.

Then our main street filled up with arm to arm camping chairs for the best parade ever.

It began with Star Spangled Banner and I can never help getting a bit emotional at that. At a parade no less! The kids had a good laugh at my welling eyes and protests at dirt allergies ;)

Following the parade full of floats from every club in town, all the search, rescue and emergency teams, along with some churches, banks, our local vets, band or two and teams and teams of horses, we spent some time dancing to big band music and sucking down root beer floats at our local block party.

Not one picture. It was too much fun to dig out the camera.

We took a much needed rest in the afternoon and then headed to the lake with some friends.

This girl braved a swim out to the diving platform as the sun sunk over the mountain.

She swam back and climbed out exclaiming she was not a baby anymore.

Our town fireworks display was canceled due to some nearby forest fires but we whooped it up with friends as the light faded.

And I felt the same. Couldn't we have this day, every day?

Happy Day of Independence!

Friday, June 30, 2017

eliza at eight

This little ray of sunshine turned eight this week and I can't say enough about her.

She was born to be Charlotte's sister and the way she cares for her is unparalleled.

She's got the biggest heart in the world. She's goodness and light and beauty through and through.

There just can not be a softer and gentler spirit alive.

Full of love and excitement and friendship, she's so easy to be around.

And she's getting taller, too, just like everyone else around here.

Eliza, you are the light of our lives and a gift to our home. Happy birthday sweet sweet girl. I love you to the moon and back.