Tuesday, August 22, 2017

...his first watermelon...

watermelon is a staple in this house.
one of my first memories with steve was watching him eat entire half of a watermelon with a spoon in my back yard.
my kids love it.
back in may, gabe really wanted to plant watermelon. we purchased two little starts that i didn't have much hope for (knowing we would have a puppy). as a child, we tried watermelon and it never failed. our puppies would use them as balls.

we watched as this plant grew ferociously all summer long. the garden was less than impressive, but the watermelon, growing next to the patio, spread nearly 30 feet. we have eight watermelons we have been watching.

this past weekend, we harvested our first one. 
gabe was so proud as he watered it most of the summer.
this watermelon was gigantic. it weighed more than 25 pounds.
juicy, sweet, and perfect.

Monday, August 21, 2017

...her little pupil...

she often has bunny participate in whatever she is doing.
she takes her for countless rides in her little purple stroller. around and around and around the kitchen island. she always buckles her in safely.

this morning, she climbed up on the piano bench and gave bunny a lesson.
they were playing twinkle twinkle little star.
she giggled.
and held bunny tight.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017


my kids want the same thing a peanut butter and jelly on a tortilla.
most days, this is lunch. then they pick a vegetable.
some days, we do smoothies.
but, they are happiest eating home made jelly and peanut butter. only strawberry.
isaac hasn't feasted on that goodness yet. his favorite food right now? cottage cheese.
theeeeee messiest. he takes no less than three sink baths a day.
we sit and chat about the day. 
they giggle. i watch them grow so quickly before my eyes.


Tuesday, August 15, 2017

...the sand box...

we spend hours upon hours every day sitting in this sandbox.

they build roads, runways, and building sites.
they bucket water in for sand castles, lakes and canals.
they bury each other.
the bury toys.

the simplicity right now is truly beautiful.
they are carefree and not preoccupied with anything other than just playing.

they are best friends.
they might not always get along, but deep down they are.
they have acres and acres to play on, but they are always right by each other's side.

some days are truly hard, but some days i see and capture the beauty of their childhood and am overwhelmed with how blessed we are.

to today.

Saturday, August 12, 2017


 isaac...10 months...oh such a fun stage. he stood for probably twenty seconds and stood up without holding on to anything. we are all just as ready for you to explore on your own, little man.
 gianna...2...this was a monumental week. you survived your first little cold, which gave you a slight bit of croup, without medication. i was overjoyed. you colored an entire magicolor book in the matter of minutes. i have your masterpieces all over right now. are a perfectionist right now. "see mom, no white." you are going through quite a growth spurt right now. you physically can't eat or sleep enough. "mom, i am just starving alllll the time."

Thursday, August 10, 2017 goodness: basil...


we have been spoiled by the garden goodness this year. despite seemingly poor soil, a few plants are thriving. the basil.

this morning, we harvested a few bunches to make some pesto. my kitchen smells amazing.

fresh pesto.

basil, pine nuts, garlic, olive oil and Parmesan cheese.

so good.

we froze the pesto in ice cubes. the kids thought the green ice cubes were hilarious.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

...30|52...pond swimming...

our friends at the barn have told me that i could take the kids swimming in the pond whenever i wanted. i decided we would try it this week to beat the heat and humidity.

it is a gorgeous pond with really clean water and sand. i am not a big fan of swimming in muddy water, so i was a bit hesitant.

we went two days this week. the kids were super excited to wear life jackets. they were a bit apprehensive the first few minutes. by the second day they were waist deep in minutes! were quite apprehensive when we arrived. however, you quickly saw the other little boy and girl and decided you weren't going to be hesitant. by the end of the time (1.5 hours), you were letting me pull you around by your life jacket on your back and your stomach. you were super excited to see the little minnows.

gianna...2...i have always dubbed you my little fish. you will try to float in the bath tub. you instantly ran right in and were trying to bellyfloat in waist deep water. you love being in the water. you were so exhausted from swimming the first day. when i went up to bed last night, i found you sound asleep on the bathroom floor rug, pajamas around your ankles, clutching bunny.

isaac. you were quite content lapping the water with your sweet little hands or playing in the sand. your siblings provided an entertaining show!

Saturday, July 29, 2017


... are writing random letters on anything you can find. you copy letters and words of books. you have really become so helpful and mature this summer. you will constantly tell me, "mom, i will watch isaac and gianna if you will go X." i am proud of who you are and who you are becoming daily. it is humbling. are the light of most days. everything is done with such passion. you love picking things in the garden. one day, in about 2 minutes (while i was changing a diaper), you managed to fill a bucket with about 8 cups (an entire plant!!) of green cherry tomatoes. you were oh so proud. after we discussed why we didn't do that, you promptly went and offered them to the chickens, again so proud.

isaac...10 can wait to talk. you have moments when you stand and let go, and get disappointed with your fall. you love blankets. you love gianna's bunny. you love playing with toys. 

Friday, July 28, 2017

...Isaac: 9 months Update...

 Mr. Isaac. 9 months old.
I had these great intentions of a proper photo shoot with you little man. however, the days turned to weeks.....and it just isn't you. you are in your element in the sand and the mud. you love nothing more than to plop in the sandbox and play. you are never still nor alone. it is challenging to get a photo with just you. not only do your siblings adore you, you cherish time spent with them. you are constantly crawling over anything to be of it all.
mr. isaac.
this is you. you are such a treasure.

LIKES: eye contact, his siblings, the sand box, dancing, me.
Official stats: 19 lbs ounces; 30". he wears 9-12 months consistently, but they won't last much longer. 5 teeth.
SAYS: sweet little babbles. bababa dadada
SLEEP: naps at 9 and 130. his morning nap is somewhere between 1.5 - 2 hours based on when you wake up. your afternoon nap is typically 2 hours. you sleep from 7-7 and wake up once.
FOOD: loves avocado, graham crackers, real dinner. popsicles. sand.
NICKNAMES: the kids call you buddy. 

you continue to be one sweet little man. you love to be with your siblings. you play contently in the sandbox. you love to move!!! you love watching the chickens. you love animals. you aren't too keen on the puppy. your smile lights up a room. you love to be held and worn. you love to chew on anything you can get your hands on. that grin and those sparkling eyes will get you anywhere!

...her hat...

my little lady.
your hat.
you are rarely seen without your mudhens hat crammed so far down on your little head that your ears are smashed out. i can't image you can see much.

we don't go anywhere with out it.

it is so well loved.


a brief hiatus.
it wasn't intentional. we got back from montana and i had a busy few weeks with photo sessions.
then, my camera needed to be sent in for maintenance.


 meet gretl.

we have been talking about getting another dog due to liesel's age for a few years. we toyed with the idea of getting a larger dog. we settled on standard schnauzers, which are particularly challenging to find. we were waitlisted for a few years and than at the last minute, the logistics weren't going to work out due to our trip to MT. i was pretty sad and as luck would have it, my mom found a breeder that had a spot left. she was from montana. puppies were ready to go the week we flew back to michigan. it worked seamlessly.

three kids, two carseats and a puppy...with luggage.
so the hiatus was in part to this little lady. she is a bundle of energy and takes up every spare second of my time right now.
she is oh so sweet, so smart, and oooohhh soooo stubborn.

we love her dearly. she loves the chickens, chases frisbees, playing in water and wet sand.
she is growing like crazy and is already bigger than Liesel at only 3 months.
we are knee deep in the puppy chewing stage, isaac and gianna aren't too keen on her at times.
however, there are glimmers of life a bit less crazy.
miss gretl, welcome to the family!
as a side note.....getting puppy pictures of a whirlwind are next to impossible. she is always a blur.

Thursday, July 6, 2017


 ashley and lou were in michigan and were able to stop by last weekend. they spend almost a day here. watching the crazy. reading. playing. singing.

i love that they make my family special.
they gave the kids some bubbles, and the morning was extra special.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017


 gabe...4.5...he learned how to buckle himself in his car seat. i didn't realize how helpful that would be. 

 gianna...2.5...she was not a fan of the "boom, boom, booms" over the last few days. 

 isaac...9mo...he is cutting more teeth. he woke standing this morning. he let go of furniture for a quick moment yesterday. oh, we can't wait for you to be walking!!

...riding debbie...

my kids were very excited to be able to ride nanny and pop's miniature horse, debbie, this year. last year, they were a bit intimidated. however, we have been riding mercedes at our friend's barn over the winter to prepare.

first up, helmets.
  then brushing.

 after we tacked her, nanny lunged her.

 nanny helped us get on and we were ready to go!.

 we gave some love when we were finished! 

 some days, the rides just weren't long enough! (and i requested a photo).