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The shell is completely finished. We have actually started the finish work in several parts of the house. Honestly I am so happy I could cry, it has been a long journey that at points had me wondering if I was going to live in a half finished house forever. Take this contrast, last winter I had my dining room in my living room, my family room was a drafty hall, the kids rooms were just sub floor so a lot of dust and what not fell through to the living room, we had a sixteen foot opening on one side of the house that was only covered by a large heavy tarp (surprisingly we did not freeze), and I had no kitchen. Literally, my stove and fridge were crammed into a hall behind the living room and we washed our dishes in the bathtub! It was fairly depressing to tell the truth, but we survived. This year we got the finish floors installed upstairs, moved the staircase (ya, we are crazy) built a brick alcove in the middle of the house for our woodstove (think Inglenook), finished the kitchen, and built the dining room! I have a fully functioning kitchen! And  a dining room! It is a wonderful, beautiful blessing. Our home is fully functioning and now we get to do the pretty and fun stuff. Hurray! We have a plan to have it completely finished by our 20th anniversary in 2020, I can actually see that happening, honestly I think we will be done before then. But I am pretty happy right now, I feel like I am living in a home instead of on a construction site for the first time since we started this crazy project. I will have to take pictures and share them next time.

 

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Abby and Chantelle conducting a Halloween costume dry run / taken in the unfinished dining room

 

Everyday · Kids · Picture Post · Uncategorized

Hello?

Because I have nothing to do, certainly not school work, or homeschooling to tend to, or piles and piles of laundry, because dinner does not need to be made and because there are absolutely NO dirty dishes in the sink, I find myself here.

I have been drawn over the last couple of months, flirting with words, dancing with my thoughts, unsettled and uncertain. There is a change, a shift. These things make me antsy.

And so here I am.

With words, stuttering brain.

Well now.

It is so grey today, I rejoice though, I love cloudy days. The children are about, the husband is at work.

I have been contemplating time, how there are so many ways to measure it, in the growing stack of clothes to take to goodwill, they have grown out of 4T, and the boy is a 10-12T. I borrow my daughters shoes. There is space, ever-increasing, but the cupboards must be full at all times. Teens eat a lot.  They go away, and they don’t need me. I need them though. I got lost in the diaper aisle trying to figure out what to buy a friend, I held up onsies  and marveled at the tiny size, was my 16-year-old ever that small? My baby is skin and bones, she is long and lanky. She needs me……..to make her cookies and read her books. I can never let her grow older. I already know I have lost them all. And here we have another summer slipping into her red and golds. Another childhood summer lost.

I have so many more years, oh I know, I know. I have time……but I know longer assume  I have it all. I can see the change, I can feel the drift. And I relish every day, every single sweet day with these eight beautiful people who call me mother.

I am back, to record that my sons just biked down the drive swords in hand, my babies are playing dress up with stuffed lovies on the trampoline, my beautiful teens are listening to music and drawing……these are the things that make up a beautiful life.

My family are my all, and that perspective is what shapes my heart.P1100399.jpg

52 week challenge · Happiness · Kids · Photography · Picture Post

52 Weeks

 

Last year I made a conscious decision to be happy. Life is freaking hard and I was wallowing in misery.

It was pretty bad.

Whose life is the worst.

Mine.

hahaha.

So. Not. True.

This mental switch wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. Get up, be happy.

Example, one day we were driving along, our car started having trouble, of course the sensible thing to do is worry, I could feel it, the anxiety blooming in my chest. Instead of letting the worry monster run rampant, I sat back and thought, wow, so glad we have added a tow package to our insurance, I am glad we are not far from home, we have a cellphone. And most of all, I saw what I had not been previously paying attention too, the rising sun. It was stunning. How could I be unhappy, how could I let my anxiety out when I was witnessing such beauty?

Our car did break down.

But it was okay. Frustrating, oh yes. But okay, life is full of frustrating experiences, hard times, and sometimes trauma.

But attitude is everything.

No, it doesn’t make it better, but neither does being miserable.

I have started a few 52 week challenges, I intend to share them here.

One is 52 weeks of gratitude, this weeks challenge (because I am just now starting) is Why start this challenge. I explained that above, I am doing this because I had a gratitude journal last year and I would say that it was a roaring success. I want to keep going.

I am  grateful to have so many things to be grateful for!

Anther challenge I started at the beginning of the year is a 52 week photography challenge, the idea behind this is that my equipment is only a tool. Right now I have a little compact, it is a Panasonic LX7. It isn’t a lot of things and it has its limits, but I am determined to find them and push them!

I started this challenge at the beginning of the year, but here is week 3 (red) and week 4 (portrait, headshot), this photo I did not share with the group but is my favorite:)

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Felicity

K~

 

 

Happiness · Kids

Being a mom

I have a ratty green robe that I love and adore, it is currently in the washing machine and like a five year old concerned for her beloved blankie, I am feeling rather impatient for it to be done.

Before I threw it in the machine I had to check my pockets,  because it doesn’t matter if I am dressed up to go out, if I am still in, I am wearing my robe, and that means that I get handed stuff and I pick up stuff and it all accumulates over the day and into a pocket it goes.

I take it all out  fondly, I find a marble and a purple gel pen, a  tiny dress that belongs to Blythe from LPS,  there is a Gormiti, two legos, a small runner ball and  a small little drawing that was carefully folded and given to me right at lunch time, it is a picture of a cow, the words “mommy, Elli” carefully written out.

I love being a mom.

Given who I am, my own strange personality, it sometimes strikes me as a little humorous that I love being a mom so very much.

This is on my mind right now, as I wait for the washer to finish up, because it is snowing out and we have a few pretty cold days ahead of us.

But Spring is right around the corner, next week actually, but soon, sooner then I think it will be warm sunshine and green all around. And my children will escape to spend the next six months outside at every possible moment, it will be beautiful, amazing, but a little sad too.

The winter forces us close, I can hear them all from where I am now, I type away and they talk and giggle and play.

We read together, all snuggled up in front of the fire, and I listen to them talk, to me, to each other. They are here and they Wonderful.

Every summer they slip away a little more.

Winter brings them back to me for just a little while….

Until summer takes them once again, farther away, older still.

I love this snowstorm.

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K~

Happiness · Holiday · Kids

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving was awesome, like really, really awesome. I feel that Thanksgiving is the one holiday where it is essential that as many people attend as possible, pack them in! Especially children, I cannot imagine a holiday without children.

And my children had a marvelous time, it has been a long year with, frankly, strained family relationships and I wanted, for my children’s sake, something normal and fun and completely drama-less. And for the most part I got that and I am grateful. I am grateful for my husband and many nephews and and Nate for coming over and helping to insulate our living room floor Thanksgiving day, I am grateful for the feast that was slaved over by Sis. A, and my sister in-laws. I am grateful for Pie. Yummy, yummy pie.I am grateful for piles of cousins and that Brindle survived all the love and attention that was showered on her.

“I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual. It is surprising how contented one can be with nothing definite – only a sense of existence. Well, anything for variety. I am ready to try this for the next ten thousand years, and exhaust it. How sweet to think of! my extremities well charred, and my intellectual part too, so that there is no danger of worm or rot for a long while. My breath is sweet to me. O how I laugh when I think of my vague indefinite riches. No run on my bank can drain it, for my wealth is not possession but enjoyment.” 
― Henry David Thoreau

Me, after eating way too much and then eating more.
Me, after eating way too much and then eating more.

K~

Everyday · Holiday · Kids

Peaches and Stuff

I am fairly certain that Peaches broke the phone.  She takes phones quite seriously and bathing them in milk is apparently what one does with a phone.

She also loves computer screens and keyboards. Keyboards have to be smashed by fat little paws until the computer gives up and shuts off.

The cats do not like the computer. Prowler has learned how to turn it off and he likes to do so whenever I am doing something important or when he wants my attention, which incidentally, is all the time.

The printer is just plain evil and does what ever the crap it wants.

Miss Constance is here tonight, you would think the Queen herself was up for a visit, I am so very glad that the cousins love each other. Even when we adults can not seem to behave the children manage to stay friends, something I am extremely grateful for. I have a few things to learn from the wee ones I think.

The girls put on a delightful play just as I walked in the door this evening, they have promised to repeat the performance tomorrow so that I might record it.

Turkey day is imminent!

I Adore and Love Thanksgiving♥

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K~