Exactly one year ago today.

It amazes me everything that took place around this time last year..  These are all of our household goods stored into one 26 foot trailer.  I would try to explain the emotions of this day, but crazy, exhausting, emotional, and insane just don't do it justice!


Pentecost and Louisa

Yesterday we celebrated Pentecost with our church family and it was a beautiful day.  We worshipped the Lord together as a family and then with the families from church enjoyed feasting over barbecue with scrumptious side dishes, cupcakes, wine, pinatas, water-balloons, and endless sunshine. It was a sweet day to celebrate the birthday of the church.
We started the journey back home only to have our hearts greatly shaken.  Benjamin, Libby, and Louisa all share the back bench of our van.  You can not hear the chitter-chatter that comes from that back row because of the diesel engine. What I did hear yesterday was Ben yelling and shrieks of terror coming from Lou. Louisa was sucking on a butterscotch candy and had gotten the thing lodged in her throat, she was choking. When I turned around to see what was happening I instantly entered a portal of frozen time.  When being thrown into an emergency situation there isn't a train of thought that takes over, but an adrenaline rush and it hammers through the veins so fast that time stands still and melts away and things that happen are blurred and it's hard to differentiate one part of the event from another.  Some how I flew over the seats and took Louisa from her seat.  There wasn't room to give her the Heimlich so I thrust her over the bench in front of me.  Jake pulled the van off the Highway, we were driving 65 mph when this happened. Once the van stopped Benjamin, I don't know how he got out so fast or when, but he was standing outside the van to open the sliding door for us.  I dragged Louisa out of the van as she was starting to pass out.  I proceeded to give her the heimlich but all that was coming out was a lot of bloody mucous.  My strength left me and Jake took over as he was standing beside me right then.  Louisa went limp and time stood still on the side of the road, and then she cried. This was good.  Then she started gagging and clawing at her throat again. I insisted we call 911 but Jake had already put in the hospital coordinates in the navigation system and we were only 2 miles away.  Shaking uncontrollably Louisa and I got back in the van and she proceeded to be cohesive to my instructions and she took and yes, swallowed some water.  We sobbed together and arrived at the hospital.  Because of her responsiveness Jake called a doctor who goes to our church and asked for his counsel.  "Was there a gurgly, raspy, cough?" As long as there wasn't and she was responding and awake then she was probably fine.  We went on home and Louisa has been very shaken by the whole thing, as has our family.  All of the children saw this ordeal unfold and the events were traumatizing.  Louisa has broken bloodvessels over the top of her eyelids from where she was unable to breath and her breath was held for so long.  She is terrified she'll choke again and she's asking some large questions about our God.  Jake and I know, "God uses all things for the good of those who love him who are the called according to his purpose," and that is us.  Louisa keeps talking about not being able to breath and how scared she was and then she starts crying again and I cry with her.  She is such a dear and I am so glad she came home with us yesterday and again this morning to see her dear little freckled face.  It was another mercy from the Lord.
We were quickly reminded of the brevity of life.  That from the hands of God comes the greatest things and sometimes to us the saddest things.  Today is another sweet day and we will make the most of it as we do every other day.  We are reminded of our frailty and that we are all on the precipice of death.  Unless Christ comes again before that day it is a moment our earthly bodies will endure.  Being ready for that day is what we must prepare for while we are living.

"Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, His love endures forever!"


Around the House

Girls awaiting discipline.
Little boys at play.  Notice Sam's missing his pants, he has a tendency to drop them as he crawls around the house.
Her lips and surrounding area may be orange from carrots, but the larger excitement is the missing tooth on the top row.  She was disturbed to note that she has a mild lisp now.. I think it makes her cuter.

No worries, Silas's nakedness is blurred.  The other kids are receiving some counseling and some praise;), from their dad.

Looking for someone special.

Baked Oatmeal, because Shelley Asked!

Here is the recipe I use for baked oatmeal..  Normally I double this because it keeps well for leftovers. This makes a great dinner too, but you'd better serve up something salty and eggy with it or your man might grimace.

  • 6 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups milk
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

To save money I typically sprinkle cinnamon over the top rather than measure exactly a teaspoon in the mix.  Also we love berries with this and I never make it without some kind of fruit.  You could measure 1 cup into the mix or just sprinkle berries over the top.  We use blueberries, raspberries, and sometimes I'll slice up an apple over the top.. it's so yummy.

Mix all dry ingredients in one bowl and all wet in another combine the two bowls and mix well.  Pour in a 9x13 dish.
Bake in 350 degree over for about 45 minutes.
Serve it up in bowls and pour a little milk over the top.


Husband Helps

Jake and I came up with a name for the shop last night.... I won't be revealing the name until I have put some items in the shop... so don't hold your breath.  Let's just say that after the account was created instead of the usual fabrics, dresses, and feminine things that pop up on Etsy's main page, I got a lot of neckties, vintage maps, rocks, wrenches and the like..  Hopefully this wasn't a mistake, but I think it's catchy and that's the first step to a good shop, right?


Looking for some Help!

I want to start an Etsy shop... Homeschool is finishing up and I really want to occupy some of that time with sewing.. and maybe other hobbies.  My shop would be sewn goods, knitted goods, and perhaps other fun homey items as time would allow.

So what should it be?  It must be one word without spaces, but can be any combination of words in the one word... Like ChristieLynnReynolds.. That's not a good shop name, I'm just giving an example of how it could look.


You Won't Believe This!

Libby, my dear little sensitive girl. The one who doesn't like loud noises, who wants to know what everyone and everything smells like, is riding her bike! What's even more unbelievable is the fact that she did it without the use of training wheels. That's right, we pulled the bike out of the rafters and it laid in the garage for a few weeks waiting for training wheels. Sweet Lib couldn't stand the wait and she had her dad help her, run along side of her, and yes... she took off and hasn't looked back.

This is why the truck isn't done yet... Instead of chasing down the electrical system Jake's been chasing down Libby...
Actually, the new transmission arrived and a lengthy line of rusted out holes beneath the gutter (under the windshield) was welded and repaired. Jake and his friend have successfully installed the new fuse box. Things are rip-roaring in the garage again and somebody is having dreams about driving the thing. We are excited and it looks like the short trip to our local Chipotle is about to become much shorter!