Tags: i'm blessed and i know it

Me

Family pictures

A few weeks ago, we had family pictures taken. If you are looking for a photographer in the Lawrence, Kansas region, I highly recommend checking out Nicole Bobey Photography.  She was pretty darn awesome to work with and captured some amazing photographs of my children. 

We went out at 8:15 in the morning and traipsed through a broken barn and some random (but beautiful!) woody areas. It was COOOOLD outside but we had fun nonetheless. The pink cheeks and noses give us character, no? 
 
Picture 1305-001

Picture 1289 

Picture 1282
 
Picture 1293-001
 
Picture 1304

Picture 1300


I sure do love those kids and that man. A lot. 

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Make it your goal to use the word traipsed today when conversing with your children. Great vocabularies are built through talking. This moment brought to you by your favorite parent educator, yours truly, and spurred after a conversation with one of my closest friend and fellow educator. 

Happy (almost) Christmas, friends. 

June 2011 kids

Another post written by Simon

I am proud to live in Kansas because...

"Kansas is a cool plase to live. Sunflowers are rilly big and rilly cool. I like all my frinds in Kansas. I like my scool. and my home and my town. and my sister and my brother and my Mom and my Dad. I like the jayhawks to."

We all love the Jayhawks, Simon. KU certainly is the best school in the state and Lawrence the best place to raise a family. DUH. With all the hippies and the Liberals and the free family activities- why wouldn't anyone want to live here?

Rock Chalk Jayhawk! Go KU!


I love how you said Mom before Dad too. Don't worry- I won't point out this fact or rub it in to Daddy. I promise. We know that would be silly and I am way too mature for that. You should be proud of me. I am proud of you.

I didn't even lose my temper make a face act sad when you refused to get in the picture with Baby Jay.  Progress, son. Progress.

It must be because we live in Lawrence. It is the best town after all.

June 2011 kids

Favorite {11} photos of 2011

Having a baby changes everything. Even though Cora was my third (and final?) baby, she still rocked all of 2011. All in all, 2011 was a good, good year. Our new house, Matt's excellent job, our healthy kids, and a brand new baby. I am pretty sure it doesn't get any better than that.
2011 Favorite

2011 brought many, many baby bump pictures. These two are my favorite- simply because lottle (my lovely double chin) can't be seen:

April 2011 089

And this one:

Favorite 2011

One of the best parts of having a baby is in the anticipation. So much potential all wrapped up in a tiny baby. Will she be born today? Who will she look like? How much will she weigh? Will everything be okay? It all comes down to this:

2011 Favorite

Favorite 2011

Favorite 2011

(photos by Jana Tigchelaar)

Sigh. Looking at those pictures makes me want to do it all over again. If having a baby hurts, then you're doing it wrong. (I kid, I kid.) Her birthday, my birthday, OUR birthday was so much fun. I'll never, ever forget the day any of my babies were born.


Moving on.  I love, love, love the newborn stage of life. Blink and you'll miss it. 

Favorite 2011


In July, Simon turned eight years old. How is this possible? Who is that handsome, crooked teeth, cute kiddo? The one who is just dying to make us laugh? The one who tells poop jokes like they are going out of style? He's my boy, that's who.

Favorite 2011


Not to be out-done, this hilarious kid turned 4 years old. Bennett is nothing but sweetness and silliness in a small package. He is rain boots and an always backward shirt that probably doesn't match. He is dirty ears and stolen chocolate covered cheeks.

Favorite 2011

Cora's first half of life was dominated by pink and big bows. I make no apologies for this. EVERY PRESENT DESERVES A BOW and she was absolutely, without a doubt, the best present ever.

Favorite 2011


There are more pictures on my computer. Many more pictures that sum up 2011 but instead I leave you with this. Our last family picture of 2011:

Family pictures

Be good to us, 2012. I am not sure anything can top 2011, but I am willing to give it a go. 

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Linked up at You Capture today. Holla!
June 2011 kids

Christmas Eve



First we went to the candle-light service at out church,
Christmas Eve

and then we came home and opened just one present. New jammies for all!

New jammies

After the children went to bed, some brand new things made their way under the tree at our house. I guess Santa was under the impression that our kiddos were actually good this year? I can't imagine that being true.
Christmas Eve

and now our tree is very, very full. Just like our hearts and our bellies.

Christmas eve

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.
June 2011 kids

Happy Giving-Thanks

When we got married, we didn't register for any fancy china.  I have a set now that came from my Great-Grandmother. While I love pretty, floral patterns on baby clothes and bathroom rugs, these plates aren't my most favorite.  

Thanksgiving 005

My most favorite thing today, however, was the excuse to use them. It's not every day that we pull out the pretty plates. Hope your day of giving-thanks was as blessed as mine.  

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24 down, 6 to go
June 2011 kids

Thanksgiving

I wouldn't be a normal American if I didn't pause before Thanksgiving and write about what I am thankful for. It's like it goes without saying though. Of course, I am most thankful for my three little blessings. Who wouldn't be thankful for them?

I mean, just look at them. I COULD EAT THEM WITH A SPOON. Also note Bennett's face of admiration. He absolutely, without a shadow of a doubt, adores his brother and sister.


Tonight Simon had to decorate a cake for Boy Scouts. The theme was "What am I thankful for?" After vetoing a skateboard theme, we settled on family. If this cake isn't a more accurate family snapshot of us, then I don't know what is. I'm pretty sure this would make the world's best Christmas card. No?

Disregard the fact that Matt's hair is a whole lot MORE salt and a whole lot LESS pepper. And speaking of hair, I'm not sure what exactly is going on with Simon's hair (Afro? Muff? Tumbleweed blowing in the breeze?). I'm also not sure why my hair looks like poop turds in both shape AND color. Never mind the fact that Matt and I each have two different colored candy eyes too.

Actually, now that I think about it, I do give the evil eye quite often when they drive me crazy. So maybe that one is partially true.

Cora's bow though? SPOT ON.

Bennett's cowlick? PERFECTION.

The heart in the corner? My heart? BE STILL.

So on the eve (of the eve) of this Thanksgiving, when you pause to think about your blessings, my hope is that you may have some cake and eat it too. May your plate be full and your heart even fuller.

And if nothing else, I hope you pause and are thankful that your hair doesn't resemble poop turds. 

Happy Thanksgiving from my family to yours.

June 2011 kids

Happy Halloween!

Nothing but lots of pictures and little words tonight. It's 11:00 and I should be in bed now!

Pumpkin carving

Bennett and his 'special' pumpkin
It's a "special" pumpkin, okay? There is nothing wrong with being different. He drew the face and Daddy cut the pieces. It's like original art, only a lot cooler cause MY intelligent 4 year old created it.

A wee little pumpkin
NOM NOM NOM. I eat pieces of pumpkin for breakfast.

A bunch of pumpkins
She (sorta) sits!

The hunters and their catch
The Hunters and their catch. Every trio needs a zebra prize.

The Hunters and their catch

Me and my girl

So that was our Halloween. How was yours?

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Linked up at You Capture. Holla!

June 2011 kids

Completely unbiased. Completely.

We did another product shoot with the always incredible and lovely Becca Pento (feel free to "like" her on FB) of Be You Photography. Seriously. This opportunity is such a blessing for us. We get to have pictures taken by a REAL! PROFESSIONAL! that knows exactly how to manipulate the camera AND we get to keep a portion of the bows that Cora models. 

Can you say WIN, WIN?

Unfortunately Cora was slightly unimpressed, which is evidenced by the fact that she DID NOT SMILE the entire shoot. It's all good in the hood. She's still my pretty baby. If you are interested in any of Cora Jane's bows, please go shop at Loveable Baby Boutique. Be on the lookout for Cora's pictures while you are there. I know some of her newborn pictures are still on the site.  

And before you go, somebody please pinch me because this life of mine is too good to be true.

3 months

3 months

3 months

3 months

Bum shot

I have a few more pictures up on Flickr. If you want to see more of Becca's wonderful work, then click here. Becca is pretty darn awesome.

(I'm looking at you, Mom. I'm 100% convinced that nobody cares about my pretty baby like you do.)
June 2011 kids

Love best

Playing babies

What I love best is that if you look closely, you can see that Bennett is gently cradling Cora's head. Who taught him to hold her that way?

Jane's face is happy. I didn't even have to say "POOP!" in order to make her smile at me. Her mother is not the kind to make poop jokes. Hey, Katie, I'm sorry that I taught her that.  

They like to play babies a lot. Bennett calls Jane, "Hun," short for honey. His sweetie, lovebug. He yells down the driveway to her while they play outside, "HUN. I'MA GOING TO THE STORE. YOU COMIN' HUN?" 
 
Sometimes she forgets and doesn't answer. He yells it louder until he eventually gives up. He jumps onto this bike (motorcycle) and rides down the street.

So many blessings to be had all in one (small) moment in this (excellent) life of mine.

Only if you look closely can you see it.