Thursday, June 30, 2011

10 years and counting...

After hunting for a quality quote that would say what I'm feeling today I realized I should probably just be woman enough to post my own thoughts. So, here it goes.
We drove down to our local ice cream shop last night. There were a few moments of looking back on the past, but mostly there was a lot of chatter and interaction from the short guy in the backseat. "Pipe down, Chachi," is what we throw in that general direction. We were so young when started this journey together...20 and 21 when we met and fell in love. It feels like yesterday, but it also seems like a lifetime ago. Even though we didn't live our childhoods together, we've grown up as adults together. We've relied on each other with God's help for so many things - full time ministry at the Ranch, buying our first home, jobs, foster parenting, fertility, traveling in the US and overseas, navigating relationships with friends and family, adoption, hurdles with my health, learning and growing in our faith, failures, triumphs, building our forever house, adding and subtracting animals, the "terrible 2's"...the list goes on.
The past 10 years have been a roller coaster of glories and valley's. But, it's been a faithful foundation and a test for the future. We can never be fully prepared to face the future...we can only be totally connected as a strand of 3 (now 4) and forge ahead, taking one day at a time.
It's a beautiful life, Charley...one I wouldn't want to live with anyone but you.
Happy Anniversary, my friend.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

sum sum summa time

saturday morning with daddy
a little slice of sherpa heaven
fresh lettuce from the garden to the table
can you see it? look very close...it's there if you stare long enough

Picnic, Memorial Day and a Laugh

Yesterday evening we were headed to our monthly Adoption group picnic. We were all in the car together after a day apart - John in preschool, daddy at work, and mommy at home preparing for our trip. I can't wait to ask about John's day when he's been at school, as I'm sure my mom loved to ask about mine when I was growing up.

I would always give the same answer, "It was fine."
Poor lady.
What do I usually get from my son at the end of the day? "It was fine, mommy."
Ok.
"Son, what did you have to eat today?"
"Nothing," he answered.
Oh, ok. Again, my poor mother.
Payback is what this is, I guess. But, here comes the best part...
"Mommy, I love you. And, I love daddy. And, Gaga and Papa and Grandma and Grandpa."
Can I just say how good it feels to know we are still most important and that school and friends don't yet trump family! I pray it stays that way until he's oh...22 or so. Sigh.
After our picnic we stopped at "Old *McDonald's"...so cute, right!? We needed a .50 cent ice cream cone after all of that playing and picnicking. When we finished, our little man announced, "now move on. Hold on to your panties." Daddy sometimes announces that when we leave our driveway. I guess it's made quite an impression.
On Memorial Day we got together with some friends that we've known for several years now. They also adopted from *Thogl and our boys were there at the same time. Little C, below on the right, (not to be confused with the artist Lil C) was the first baby I held and fed before my Johnny woke up the morning we arrived in Taiwan. It is a blessing to be able to connect and share life with them several times a year. God weaves an intricate fabric of love in special ways!

C on the right, at *Thogl (thanks, J, I borrowed this from FB!)

J at *Tholg
And, here are our boys today - 3 years later and oh how they've grown!
Do you love my boys wild hair - spiked after sweaty play outside?!

Our families

Mmm...the AC just kicked on at 9am here in the south. Better go shut the open windows...By the way...we try to stay frugal, even when it comes to AC. We keep the temp at 79 during the summer and turn the ceiling fans on high. Since we're in the middle of a hay field with hardly any shade we try to leave the Ac high so that we don't get too spoiled...we still have to work outside! And, coming back into the Ac on high does not bode well if we still need to keep it real with work outdoors!
Try to stay cool on this hot summer day!
Jackie

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Gardens, Flowers, and Fruits of Labor

Welcome to summer on the farm. It's full of blooming flowers, a running creek, shooting lettuces...and loads of crabgrass in the garden . Every season has it's ups and downs. I guess that could be said of childrearing, seasons of life...let's see, what else? All kidding aside, this truly is the prettiest season so far on the farm. It's the 3rd year that we have been living in our home, the 3rd year we've planted (a scaled down) garden, the 3rd year of John's life, and the 3rd year that grass has sprung in the front yard. It's a vast improvement over the past ~ rocks out front, a cranky toddler...ew!!

Mesclun, with a hint of peas creeping in.

Can anyone guess which crop in the garden already has flowers?

Personally, I don't think there is anything better than watching my husband work in the garden...it shows how limber he still is after all these years.

Strawberry season is winding down for us...we lost our plants last year to some pesky invasive goats so we had to start anew...a least we had a few fruits to enjoy.

Sherpa...watching faithfully, never lifting a helping paw.
We are gearing up for our first vacation as a family! Next week we are going to Amelia Island, FL. We'll leave towards the end of the week and get back the following week. The Neals are coming to stay at the farm while we are away. We are so thankful for their willingness to spend their vacation here caring for the farm and animals and working on projects. It's going to be hot...we are working on our tans here in ol' KY now so that we don't turn into lobsters in FL. John has not visited the beach yet and we are so excited to watch him discover the sand and surf for the first time in his little life! I can't wait to take pictures of him enjoying our vacation.
Adios for now...we hope that you enjoy this beautiful sunshine!
Love,
Jackie