Monday, May 9, 2016

Growing Kids, Turning 40, and Loving My Life

The last number of months have been full of lots of living....ordinary moments sandwiched in between some pretty amazing stuff.

Our kids grow and change and learn new responsibilities, yet in many ways, my days flow from one to the next and can feel rather mundane.

I spent much of my winter taking my boys to basketball practice and watching their games. I absolutely love watching them play and improve and learn real-life lessons from the game of basketball. I am so proud to be their Mother. 

On February 28, Logan turned 14. Soon after his birthday, he got his permit...and took driver's ed....and now has his official paper from his driving instructor waiting in our safe, until time to get his school permit this fall. 
We all went to an Iowa basketball game for Logan's birthday.

He also grew about 4 inches this past year and every now and then, as I look up to him, I wonder just where in the world the time has gone.

Leon and I took our annual weekend away the first part of March. This time we got a hotel close to home. The children stayed at home and the boys did all the chores. Leon's brother and wife spent the nights with our kids. It was a delightful weekend away. We took one, poor-quality picture the whole weekend.

Life has had a lot of ordinary moments, as well. If a cowgirl emptying the dishwasher is ordinary.
 And the 9 year old learns to cook...

 And then I turned 40! What a birthday! My sisters from MO and TX (almost) surprised me for the weekend. Leon got a hotel room for us for a night, and we also spent time with the rest of the family. It was a very, very special weekend and I felt very loved and celebrated.

 And then one night some friends showed up in costume and kidnapped me for the evening. Pedicures, riding the carousel, and a delicious meal....
Turning 40 isn't so bad...

Easter weekend we had plans of going fishing, but the weather wasn't cooperating. Leon suggested making donuts.....and I said, "Only if you help."

 And he did a great job of frying them all....
 Our wonderful taste-tester stopped by to see if they were edible.....he usually smells donuts from miles away.

Easter Sunday traditional photo-

And we planted garden....

Our first campfire for the year-

Our first hike at the reservoir for this year-


The girls and I went to the Tulip Festival in Pella with my Mom and some more family....

Yesterday was Mother's Day.....
I was thoroughly spoiled. Lunch at Red Lobster with the family, a nice, long walk alone, movie and popcorn last evening, and The Pioneer Woman's lovely red dishes from Wal-mart!!

The last several months I've been doing a lot of reflecting on where I am in life right now compared to my life oh, say, 5 years ago. In the area of our children alone, we are in quite a different stage. I find it super exciting, to watch them grow and change and mature, but it also means a shift in parenting, and I'm not always doing so well in that. Leon often (gently) reminds me that they aren't 4 years old anymore, and I need that reminder. Honestly, I love, love this stage but it also has its challenges. 

One of the best things that's happened in the recent months is the healing of my own heart and the way God has led me to walk through some past pain in order to experience freedom. I am seeing his promise of Restoration for the year 2016 come true. 

As for this blog, well, I am praying that God would give me my voice back, so to speak, to be able to write again. So far, it has felt safer to keep a journal of sorts for our family's adventures and day-to-day living. And we'll see where God takes it from there.

Happy, happy spring! It's a delightful time of the year!

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