Last night we celebrated Jake. He turned 37. We had so much fun. For dinner we ate tri tip sandwiches with wine au jus and homemade barbecue sauce along with a Caesar Salad. We insisted Jake wear a green party hat. It was to show that he was the one being celebrated. I decided later that any Irish in his blood was in full color throughout the evening. After dinner Jake set to work on his thesis a bit while clean up took place. Louisa put together the game she had invented all on her own. It was called, Pin the Head on the Skateboarder. The big kids and I had another game to be intermixed with Lou's. This game was a secret between the three of us (Colby, Jackie, and myself). It was called, Silly String the Big Green Man. Jake was blindfolded and spun around multiple times. He set off to find the headless skateboarders holding a little head in his hand. Once he pinned it to the wall and sort of removed the blindfold he was attacked:

Libby was so excited that she stood in the middle of the room and jumped up and down.  Repeatedly.

Jake getting stringed by his sons.

Silas was sitting at the table during the festivities and when the stringing began he became very frightened and cried.  Samuel did too, though I didn't get a picture because he ran into the kitchen and hid.

After we used up all the string; we settled ourselves down a little, comforted the babies whom at this point were very afraid for their dad, chastised the dog for rubbing himself all over the string and eating it,  and we decided to open some presents.

All kinds of sweet things were given to Jake. Just look at Lib's dear little countenance.  So fond of her poppa.
Libby and Colby take a moment to pose for the camera.
Time for some cake at this point. The kids and I found some very special sparkler candles at Target. We thought it would be fun to have some sparks fly while Jake blew out his candles. Little did we know that the candles would be very difficult to extinguish.. Sorry hon.
Lemony Ina Garten cake on its way.

Jake's so excited to finally have a lemony, tangy, sweet cake to enjoy. None of us realize how hard he'll have to work for it.
That's right love, take a deep breath.  No, actually you'll need more than that one.
What the camera doesn't show here are the 5 huge blows he took before figuring out something might be wrong.
Samuel, I'm worried too, will daddy ever blow out all of those candles?
Success and a huge grin.  
Ahh, the evening was such a great time. The food and cake were so yummy. The laughter abounded. We just love our Big Green Hatted man. Jake, we treasure you much. You are the champion in our hearts and we deeply admire and respect you. Thank you for all of your perseverance, for all of your hard work, for the way that you lead us. Once again, Happy Birthday!



We have had the flu.  Not all of the Reynolds, but nearly half.  Silas, Libby, Louisa, and Benjamin were the little ones to be taken out by the illness.  At this point everyone is on the mend and prayers are hopeful that we are done with it.  Benjamin declared it's the sickest he's ever been and I fully agree with him.  Fevers raged for 5 days with him and 4 with the others.  The reprieves Benjamin had started about 1.5 hours after a dosage of motrin and expired about an 1.5 before we could give the next dose. It was a very sick cycle.  Between the kids; we had lots of outcries from the pains of leg and back aches, very intense headaches, running eyes which burned bright red, and a few stomach responses (that's friendly talk).  Jake and I massaged heads, back and feet with oils and did our utmost to comfort them. At this point of the infection there is only mild drainage and lots of sputum coming up. It has been very sad to watch and we are so thankful that this isn't a way of life day in and day out.

It is however a reminder of the ugliness of sin which is a much greater sickness, and one that if not exposed to much light will lead to sorrows much greater than that of the manifestations of the flu bug; ultimately the separation from Christ eternally. Praise the Lord for His forgiveness and Praise the Lord for physical healing as well.

We are so thankful that everyone is somewhat hungry today because we're getting ready to light the house up with the burning of some 37 candles...  More to follow later.

Salt-looking proud, proud he isn't a human who suffers things like influenza.


Valentines Daddy Daughter Date

Our church held its annual Father Daughter Valentines Date.  Jake swept the girls off their feet by taking them to dinner and then to the church for a special time of Father and Daughter bonding.  There were things for them to do such as, daddy paints his daughters fingernails, crafts to make together, a game of Pictionary and of course the long awaited moment where Dad praises his daughter in front of everyone else for a certain attribute or area where she really excels.

The anticipation of the night was played out differently by each of the girls. Jackie had the date set, she knew exactly what she wanted to wear and how she wanted me to fix her hair. She knew precisely the time she would get dressed. Everything was picked out, from the jewels to the shoes beforehand. Louisa was also excited, but didn't spend as much time talking about it as her other two sisters did. She chose the dress she would wear right before the event and she let me fix her hair pretty much however I wanted to just as long as there was a braid in it. She became more excited about the event as the minutes rolled by the day of. I really admired her keen sense of cool about the whole event. Libby, on the other hand, knew the event was to happen on a Wednesday evening and so the Wednesday before the actual event there was a big let down for her. By the time the Wednesday had rolled around she was beside herself with excitement. She had her dress on before 7 am that morning. She had headbands on, her tights and shoes before breakfast was on the table.  In the afternoon when it was nearing time to go she cried when Jake laid down for a quick nap. She wanted him to be in the shower getting cleaned up, not resting.

Watching them leave together was so sweet.  It made my heart light and desire them to have good, godly husbands of their own. They had a blast and each girl basked in the words her father spoke of her. Libby was so pleased she got up and danced, I kid you not.  Libby also had Jake paint the fingernails on each of her hands a different color. Jackie and Louisa were refreshed when they came home and told me sweet stories of the memories they shared with their daddy. It was a precious time for all of them. 
Precious little frames, each wrought from within the deep secret places of the Lord
The expressions of joy on their faces are priceless.  
I imagine that before we know it these girls will be resting their heads on his shoulder, not the side of his arms.



This little girl makes me laugh.  She has such an energetic, funny nature about her.  When I was pregnant with Libby I remember feeling her move a lot.  In fact, she moved so much that I would marvel about it and honestly thought she was doing flips, over and over again. When she was born the midwife noted that she had a, "True Knot," in the cord.  The midwife also made mention that it was the 2nd time in her nearly 20 years of delivering babies that she had seen one.  Basically when I was pregnant with her, at some point she looped the cord and swam through the loop forming a knot.  To this day Libby has been the most active baby in the womb by far.  I think that most people in this house would agree that she is still the most active child outside the womb..  She truly doesn't slow down. Funny little thing.

She has a style all her own and seems to be as smart as whip.  She's extremely emotional, truly I am not exaggerating.  She sometimes cries through homeschool, being so excited and exasperated all at once she has nothing left to do but cry.  Just ask her to write the number 6 and you'll see what I mean.  Yes, Libby, the girl with no bounds.  She has a persnickety sense of style as well and she even has the audacity to tell me how to dress and whether or not its fitting for whatever occasion presents itself.  Sometimes I'll have the opportunity to get dressed while she isn't under my feet and I'll come out from the bedroom and she gets so giddy with excitement if I'm wearing something new that she hasn't seen before.  She tells me I'm a princess.  She also declares when people are dressing immodestly and thinks she wrote the book on it.

When Jake and I go out for a date or say the Marine Corps Ball and we are wearing formal clothing she thinks we're going off to get married again.  She doesn't understand that we've been married for 14 plus years.  To her, marriage is about he formal dress, no matter the color or occasion.  She'll even ask Jake, are you going to kiss her?  Sweet huh?

Speaking of Libby, I should go now.  She's waiting in the laundry room for some attention. She was caught teaching Samuel how to climb over the couch and jump off..


House Hunting

Most of my free time on the computer has been devoted to house hunting.  Thus, the neglected blog.  House hunting has become a bothersome task.  We've discovered homeowners are scared of large families.  Having a dog doesn't help things either.  In fact, one potential homeowner wanted to interview Salt. Oh Saltie, you've been called upon, could you catch a plane to the east coast and pass the interview please? Remember not to pee on anything you shouldn't and no biting either, okay? All kidding aside.  We're determined to find a home. We are praying we will find just the right one and we know that the Lord will provide shelter for us. We are keeping up the hunt and having a watchful eye at all times.  Please pray for us, to find a home, that we (read ME) wouldn't give into anxieties about the housing situation.

In other Reynolds happenings:

Libby is a riot.  She makes us all laugh with her sweet, silly antics.  She loves to try to help mother Samuel. Samuel doesn't appreciate it.

Silas is sick right now.  Some sort of mystery fever with some vomiting to boot.

Samuel's been given the call sign of, "Big Baby."  If you've seen Toy Story 3 you probably know where we got that from.

Louisa is enamored of Big Baby and spends sweet time playing with the little lad outside.  She loves to sit him on the tricycle and push him up and down the sidewalk.

Benjamin, along with his dad and big brother, watched a portion of the PGA championship out at Pebble Beach.  In true Benjamin fashion he approached a golfer on one of the greens and asked for an autograph.  Instead of a scribbled signature on his oil stained 3x5 homeschool card he'd carried around all afternoon with him, he came home with the golfer's glove and scribbled signature.  Turns out to be some guy who won the Masters a couple of years ago. Lucky kid.

Jackie is back in Pointe Shoe training.  This is a very big deal to her and we are proud too.  She's made excellent progress at the new studio and it's very enjoyable seeing her improve.

Colby has decide to pursue the Honors Diploma Curriculum through Veritas Press.  We are excited for him and in awe that we have a young man who'll be a, "High Schooler" next year.

Jake is making great progress with his thesis.  Lots of data and statistics talk coming from him.  He dreams in... the binary code.  Perhaps he wishes he could put me in a binary code, so that he could better understand me.  That would make his life too simple ;).

That's about it for now.



22 Weeks Tomorrow

Time flies when you're having fun... right?  I must be having fun because I can hardly believe I will be 22 weeks along tomorrow.  I am feeling very good; definitely starting to get that 2nd trimester, feel good, energy boost.  I think I'm about the size right now as I was when I was pregnant with Silas at this point.  This is good because that could mean an 8 - 9 pound baby.  Samuel was a very difficult labor, my most painful yet, with Louisa being an extremely close 2nd.  Samuel tipped the scales at 9 lbs 12 ozs.  From my own limited experience the bigger the baby, the harder the labor.  

Enough about labor.  I am waddling quite a bit and my hips are very poppy.  I've been walking and really enjoying myself.  I also am thinking a lot about the move, it's hard not to, and I'm not so motivated to start packing, but that could all change tomorrow.  

The picture below is pretty good, I look larger at different angles, and I think this angle flatters me.  The pants I have on are, "low-rise hip-huggers."  It's kind of neat because they button really low and my shirts are so long, you can't tell.  They were a bit taut this morning trying to wiggle them on and I noticed that when I sat down I could no longer feel my legs.  I think that's a tell-tale sign that I won't be wearing these pants again once I have to wash and dry them.  That's okay though, I have some maternity pants that fit very nicely and are quite cozy if I do say so myself. 

21 weeks and 6 days.

It's nearing the 9:30 hour and I'm tired, so goodnight dear family and dear friends. Happy Weekending to  all.