1. I have been inconsistent in my blogging as of late. I could blame the fact that John had a couple of business trips or that the children's schedules are crazy busy. I could blame my current state of health that has lingered for months, thankfully I am on antibiotics now. Hoping to not be as "fuzzy' in the next few days. However, the reality is I have let the opinions of others creep into my head.
See, as my blog has grown (it's really not that very big), I have received inquiry after inquiry from companies wanting to sponsor the blog. They want to advertise. I am flattered, but I decided from the beginning that this was not the route I was going to take my site. Now, I'm not saying that it's wrong, but it's wrong for me.
So the last few months I have vacillated over every post, every photo, every story that I might add here in these pages of our lives. Are they worthy to be on the blog? Are the photos good enough? Will the content be engaging? Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah! Why do I do this to myself? Now I'm not sharing all this because I'm trying to boast, but rather with the hope that you will understand the thoughts of my heart.
This blog has taken on its own little life. I have strong impressions most days about what I should write and how to present it. I would love to take credit for anything wonderful that comes from my fingertips, but the real credit goes to the Lord. I would have never anticipated that this would be the direction of the site, but it is and so I am trying to be obedient so I can clearly hear those impressions. I am constantly in awe of His power and mercy.
Be that as it may, I still find myself comparing myself to others. Trying to fit into a mold that doesn't fit me. I will never be what society at large wants me to be. None of us will. We are all so different and unique why do we try to fit into this mold, whatever your particular mold may be. I want to celebrate who we are, rejoicing in our individuality.
So back to the inconsistent nature of my posts, I'm going to try and forget about the numbers that are thrown at me. The tugs and pulls of outside influences will be pushed back and emerging will be me in all my flaws. I will try and listen a little more closely to the small quiet voice that helps direct me. You would think I would have learned this lesson by now, it seems to happen over and over again in my life, but I'm slow to remember.
I write for my children. I write for the Lord. I write for myself. If along the way you can find a little bit of inspiration then an added measure of happiness fills my heart.
Back to today's menagerie:
2. Isn't she lovely? A few extra shots of Munch after Jon was done with our family shoot. I tease Munch that she was born in the wrong era. She is strong, intelligent, talented, and probably a bit intimidating. She doesn't want to play the social games and quite frankly doesn't understand them, probably due to the fact that the girls grew up watching old movies and musicals. She wants the courting of long ago and finds that it is extinct. Of course, she doesn't want any of this right now. She is knee deep in finals and missionary preparation. She is complex and wonderful! I was so glad I got these photos.
3. My cousin took this photo earlier this fall and I was so thrilled that she would share it with us. This photo is the perfect example of John and Ellie's relationship, with an added Loaf just for fun. Thank you so much A!
4. When I purchased the letters for our alphabet tree we had only 6 children (it seems silly to say only 6 I know). I had ordered some extra letters for some family members and received a few extra letters that were accidentally included in the package. The company, I can't remember now who I ordered them from, told me to keep the extra letters. It was very sweet.
As Brick and Dash were born we had their exact initials for our tree, but when Loaf was born unfortunately we didn't have her initial. Imagine my delight to have found an "L" in the bottom of a box that I was cleaning out. It's not her actual initial, but she goes by Loaf at home just as much. We are all there and our number 6, we just flipped it upside down for our 9 children. It's a happy tree.
5. Ellie has become a member of the family in a way I never understood prior to having a puppy. Truly, I didn't know how much a part of your life a pet can be. So as you see she will make quite a few posts, especially because she is glued to my side most of the day while we are in training.
She loved the weekend snow fall. Gus and Fred loved that Ellie let them wrap a scarf around her neck. Our back yard is not fenced and so until Ellie learns a healthy respect for the horses in the pasture she gets to stay on the extra long tether while she's outside. She doesn't mind it because it means she gets to play with the children.
6. I'm about 1/2 way through our Christmas cards. I gave up years ago making this a family event, but I do have children in and out helping along the way so that is nice. I will post the actual card a little closer to Christmas. I love the square size.
There is something wonderful about Christmas cards. I love seeing how the children change. I love seeing the lives of our loved ones summed up in one quick page. I love knowing that if needed these same loved ones would coming running to help even if our lives are lived one Christmas card at a time. Love and friendship are beautiful gifts.
7. Tortillas are the pide piper in our home, well one at least. Gus is our foremost expert and we all love when she decides it's tortilla night. The boys are getting really good at rolling out the tortillas. One of our favorite meals!
7. I love this relationship! Actually John has a wonderful relationship with each of the children. It is tender to see. I am so thankful he is such an active participant in our family. He loves to be with us, he wants to be with us and does everything he can to put us first. What a blessing not only for me, but for the children, especially when some of those children like to talk about yucky things like bugs and guts.