Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Lake Excursion

Grasshoppers, grasshoppers, and MORE GRASSHOPPERS!
Not quite as many as the plague perhaps, but still plenty of large brown jumpy things to keep the boys busy filling a bucket and dreaming of lake trout!

And we did make it to the lake this evening in expectation of a bath.
Everyone is scared to get close to one another for fear of being smelled:-)
I don't know, because we each smell as bad as the next. I think?
(At least that is what I'm telling myself!)

Back to the Lake...

The boys both stood on the dock (quite possibly more sane than those of us IN the water). Zack's pole was a pine bough he had cut, and he stuck one of those long-legged kicking grasshopper on the hook himself!
I was very amused to look out and see that Clay's bobber had a passenger;
The grasshopper attached to his line was wisely avoiding the fish by hitching a ride - on top:-)

I was so proud of myself for being the first one into the lake, but IT WAS COLD!
My legs got numb, I got one of those brain-freeze headaches (had to wash my hair), and comparatively speaking, the cool air outside actually felt warm!The water WAS COLD!
I kept reminding myself it was all worth it to get a little soap in the places where the sun don't shine - under the ol' hairy armpits to be specific, but wow was it cold. On the upside, my armpits aren't so hairy anymore:-)

No fish were caught this evening.
I don't think they ever knew Clay's grasshopper was out there to be had, and since Zack didn't get any nibbles within the first five minutes, he was content to call it a day - baiting the hook was the fun part anyway!
It was a successful venture all in all.
we big folks are feeling much more human after our frigid bath, the girls enjoyed sticking their toesies in the water, the boys their fishing experiment...

...And the Grasshoppers sang Hallelujah as they were returned to freedom!

Pretty Pink Soap?

Our "bathroom" right now consists of a rent-a-potty parked out near the driveway.

It is the newest, cleanest, generally-nicest outhouse I've ever used (and I have some experience here), and there's a guy who comes to pump and clean it once a week which is the closest I've ever come to having a maid!

That being said...
As nice as I talk, as wonderful as it is to have someone else clean the loo for a change, and as truly thankful as I am not to be squatting over a hole in the ground,

It IS a rental toilet.

The part I thought you'd find humorous regards my sweet naive little daughter:

The first time we used our rented outhouse this Summer, Susanna was completely enamoured by the little "sink" in the outhouse, complete with small round PINK "bar of soap"!
I was horrified!
But had to be glad I was accompanying her so she didn't actually have a chance to use this sink and soap!!!
Apparently Hannah had the same experience with my niece Eleanor, so we mommas had a good laugh as we wiped our brow in relief!
That could have been a close call - GROSS!!!!!

Do y'all know what I'm referring to here?

The urinal and deodorizer.

Yuck really says it all, doesn't it?!

P.S. I know I used a lot of bold and italics, but I can't apologize.
I think this post deserves every italic and exclamation mark it got!

Monday, September 29, 2008


There may not be any indoor plumbing, but there is now a wood stove in service!
I love the smell of a wood-burning stove:-) I love watching the dancing flames, and the warm glow of firelight. Especially reflected on faces.
I ALSO am very happy to enjoy going to bed in a cozy warm house at night when it's chilly and cold outside!

Yes, we are arrived at our glorious retreat!
Our green Idaho mountain home is now taking on a golden glow as the birch trees and ferns change into their Autumn attire.
I long to post pictures, but our internet connection is too slow for that - at least tonight, but let me paint a picture for your imagination:

Our house is now sealed up with a dark stain. The windows have been replaced and trimmed out with 6" rough cut wood.
The deck is done, and now boasts plenty of room for spreading out a tarp and train track ;-)
...in addition to a table and camp stove, and left over space for a table and chairs.
Our kitchen counters and staircase are sealed up with a clear coat. They look great, but besides that they are now serviceable! I can set lots of stuff on them, and work from them, and sit on them...
and dream of them one day holding a sink!
Maybe a stove and oven too?

My boys immediately saw potential in the piles of wood scraps and junk.
Since yesterday they have built a little fort using two old mattresses for the West wall, and completing the inside with a vinyl floor! :-)
It was heard of one: "I think the Smith Boys are missing out!"

It is just too lovely to be inside during the day, so we took our reading out and enjoyed our Bible reading and hymns under the sky.
What a way to do school!
Only we had to stop every so often to watch a crested Jay bird steal birdseed off the porch!
He didn't seem to put off by our presence:-)

The Little Bugs Took a walk with me after we read together. I was completely amazed that they found a handful of Huckleberries left on one or two bushes! I couldn't believe they had lasted this late into the year, but not to worry - they're gone now!!!
Our walking was interrupted by various detours to examine a leaf, or unidentified berry.
I watched (and took pictures) as Zachary found a stick, and gave his full attention to whittling a spear. I reveled in seeing his face through the chartreuse leaves, intent upon his work.

Meanwhile, Susanna and Olivia found a damp patch of dirt to dig into with their fingers.
You know, fingers are the best diggers for small-scale work?
For Sue is was a little mound with a leaf stuck in the top, and Olivia is all about making pizza's and other edible things:-)
I'll have to put that interest to work in the kitchen before long - perhaps when there is a sink to wash those dirty finger in!

We are enjoying every minute, thankful for the endless opportunities for learning and playing.
AJ was even able to work from his mobile kitchen office today - IN HIS SWEATS!
Can you beat that?!!

Thank you to the Lord of all who has blessed us with abundantly more than we could ever dream possible!

All glory to Him,
Momma Bug

Friday, September 26, 2008

We're Outa Here!!

Large View
The sink is bleached, the trash out, car packed, Susanna's new pink car seat buckled in, toiletries remembered, breakfast had, last diapers changed, potties done, living room vacuumed, M&M bowl refilled for Uncle Wyatt...
(And I even removed the cookie crumbs from my keyboard!)

I think we're ready!

5...4...3...2...... . . . . . . .

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I AM NOT Nowhere!!!

(As Emma would suggest. Heh-HEM!)

I am supposed to be packing once again for Idaho.

Yes, it does seem soon after having just arrived home from the last trip.
Honestly though, we didn't intend to stick around this long!
It turned out we all needed to regroup (which means: eat real food, sleep in our own beds, and catch up on laundry).
So here I sit at the computer typing, eating a cookie, and feeling a little bit like a child who is caught playing with toys when he is supposed to be napping :-}

To be perfectly fair, there are at least four significant piles growing in the living room, creating the effect that I have indeed been doing something productive this morning; combined with the fact that I AM MOM, and have actually caught real-live children playing with toys when they were supposed to be napping -TODAY!
Since they are now asleep (or getting better at pretending) I thought I'd grab that cookie and nibble away while I enjoy all the rest of you-all's blogs. The work will wait (it always does, in my experience)!!

All this to say...
I am NOT nowhere!
Although I am sitting at the computer spilling cookie crumbs in my keyboard, I AM SOMEWHERE between packing the Little Bugs clothes, and trying to figure out if the cough drops belong in the toiletries pile, or the first aid pile.

...Or maybe the food pile?


Maybe another cookie would help me decide :-)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Beloved First-born!

I am so sorry this picture turned out blurry because I love this picture of Zack! It's such an un-posed smile:-)

I never understood people who said "Oh, that's not so-and-so's natural smile - It's so hard to get a good picture of him!"
I understand it now.

Zack is that way!

He is a handsome fellow, but not photogenic. He has his little goofy smiles for my camera, but getting a fresh belly -laughing smile out of him is like gold: It's rare so you better treasure it!

New Toy!

I am a baby carrying fanatic - it's a fetish of mine I guess!
The really weird thing is that I have only tried a few carriers, and even with those, my back is pretty sorry after wearing the baby long.

This beauty was a gift from a dear sweet lady at church!

She saw I had a baby, and generously offered to give me a brand new sling (and directions) she had been storing.
As for trying something new, the price was right!
Today was my first time to try it, and Carolina seemed to give it her stamp of approval.
She's pretty happy as long as I have her attached to me any ol' way - usually that's the "carrier-free left-hip" method!
And let me tell you - I have that one down!!!

My favorite part about this new sling is the two tiny matching ones my girls received :-)
Sue has to wait until her birthday this weekend...

but Olivia got hers today!

I think she grew two inches taller with pride, and she wore this thing all day long!
It was the most heart-warming thing ever!

On a side note, Sue doesn't know hers is on it's way in a couple days, so today she was not a happy camper!
We had a long day learning what it means to think of others, and to be grateful for what we have!
It's a hard lesson even for old folks - this false idea of entitlement - so I think it's preferable to learn it at the tender age of "almost-four" ;-)

Thank the Lord it's a new day tomorrow, and thank the Lord that today was not her birthday! She has a few days left before then to become a little more humble, and hopefully because of that she'll enjoy the privilege of the gifts she receives that day:-)

(And I can't wait for all three of us mommies to be carrying our babies together!)

Lil Ol' Me?

It's nice to know that I can make someone smile!
At least that what Mommy Reg says (and I thank you dear friend for the honor of this award!) :-)

It is my very great privilege to bestow this award on a couple brilliant friends of my own - who (I note here the obvious) often make me smile!

My sister Emma Kate has a delightful variety of topics at My Meandering Mind...

My new blogging friend Ashley of A Bowery Hollow :-)

Dear dear Mother Hen who lives on A Ship Full of Pirates!

And lastly, one of my favorite smile-making blogs by my friend and sister-of-my-sister-in-law,
Faith, who lives in the very busy (and noisy) Blessed Quietness.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

11 Years!!

My beloved friend married me 11 years ago today.
It was sunny and breezy - the weather was perfect for an outdoor wedding. I only know because of the pictures :-)
Everything went absolutely perfect! It was a late start because all our guests were busy visiting and enjoying the reunion. I hear that there was the usual wedding scurry - the missing salad, the forgotten curls, the late bridal party...
I wouldn't know.
I planned on getting married even if there wasn't enough punch!

Adam-Jon had a friend deliver a little pink bottle of perfume to me. It had a tiny rosebud and ribbon tied to it!
I could see him outside with the pastor as I peeked through our living room blinds. We were married at my childhood home - it was lovely!

My sister Mattie Grace was four years old and stood up front with her little flower girl basket.
After a time she stood beside me and took hold of my skirt in her fist, so I unhooked it and held onto it with my free hand.
Before long, she stood directly facing the pastor and took hold of AJ's hand as well!
There was no one in the world but me and my beloved, and miss Mattie!
It made some sweet memories (and pictures!)

My mom made colorful flags which lined the gravel road and waved exultantly in the breeze as we drove past on our way out - the beginning our future life together!

I am truly the most blessed of women to stand beside this man.

I thought he was perfect back then, and I am still of that opinion!
After 11 years of precious times and difficult ones I have many many more reasons to believe it!

Lord, If you are willing, please grant us many more years together. Thank you!

And... I love you babe!

Friday, September 19, 2008

I Am...

"...I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect."
Genesis 17:1b

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Take Heart dear Faithful!

How is it that the constant ebb and flow of our daily services at home are so regular that their true brilliance blinds us?
The thing we women spend weary tears on, is the very thing that is of lasting glory!

How we become sucked into self condemnation and self-pity because we don't "measure up".
To whom?
Do you really think that the beautiful pictures and refreshing words you read on one womans blog is the whole picture of her life?
I believe that it is a wise woman who chooses to dwell on the lovely and proclaim the worthy in her life - who uses her words to convey a heart of gratitude.
I am thankful that there are women dedicated to edifying their sisters. We need more of that.

It is likewise a real woman who occasionally exposes herself to critical scrutiny. It is not easy to be humbled, is it.
To let others into the uncleaned house, to witness the unruly times our children have - that is life!
We all live it.
Learn from the victories of wise women, and share the things that work for you.
Let us be transparent enough for there to be encouragement!
Take heart my dear friends! This is the narrow path, and you have escaped Apollyons kingdom.
He didn't like you when you were in his darkness, but a deserter is a stench even worse! Don't think he will idly stand by while you serve the Lord faithfully in your homes - changing diapers and providing clean clothes for your family is noble! Those are acts of service that shine brightly for the Lord's glory!

Let me tell you that even days in the fog can be used to glorify the Lord. He is faithful!
Carry on!

Excerpt from The Pilgrim's


"There is no prince that will thus lightly lose his subjects, neither will I as yet lose thee..."

"...I count that the Prince under whose banner now I stand, is able to absolve me; yea to pardon also what I did as to my compliance with thee.
And besides, O thou destroying Apollyon, to speak truth, I like His service, His wages, His servants, His government, His company, and country better than thine: and therefore leave off to persuade me further, I am His servant, and I will follow Him."

Oh' Livia!!! Sweet Sweetness with Rocks in Your Pocket

Monday, September 15, 2008

Niagara TWICE?

I know.
We are certainly spoiled!

It was much cooler today - enough so, that we wore our fleeces.
The falls were as majestic as yesterday if not more wonderful!

We overheard a tour guide recounting some famous (and not so well known) stories of people who went over the falls.
It IS illegal, but some people like that kind of attention I guess.
Not my kind of thrill, and I'm not so vain to need that kind of popularity
I have a blog.

That being said, we enjoyed the privilege of seeing our cousins again.

Emma too, was a bundle of fun today:-)
We got a little carried away with the camera... it happened to be one of those times we both felt generous enough to share I guess.
And we were plenty full of sillyness!

Lastly I leave you with some candy for the heart's sweet tooth:-)