A Heart Toward Home

"...But as for me and my house, we will serve (worship) the LORD."
Joshua 24:15

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Reserve Grand Champions

My last post was (too long ago) about Isaac and Sarah raising baby chickens. They are a part of the 4-H chick chain which is where they raise their baby chicks until the end of September and then they enter them into the Chicken Show. Last weekend we took six of their chickens to the Chicken Show and they were judged. Isaac and Sarah's chickens received blue ribbons and the second place prize which is Reserve Grand Champion. We are so proud of these two! 

They have learned so much and have enjoyed doing this. Now we are down to 17 hens. When we received our chickens in April we also received one chicken that we didn't know what it was (an exotic chicken). They were to raise this chicken and find out what kind it was. Now we know that we received one Americana Rooster. He is a very pretty rooster. Don't you think so?

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Chick Chain

In April, Isaac and Sarah joined the 4-H Chick Chain. We received 25 day old baby chicks and will raise them til they are 20 weeks. Then they will take six of the chickens and show them at the Fair. The other 19 chickens are ours to keep. Lots of fresh eggs!! 
Since we would be having chickens that meant we had to build a chicken coop and run.
After lots of searching the Internet we decided to use one of the stalls in our barn for the coop and attach the run onto the side of the barn.
With some scrap lumber Bryan and the boys began working on the project. These are pictures of them working on the run. 
Who needs a ladder when you have dad? The boys were a huge help and able to learn while helping.
Here they are hanging the door to the run.
The finished door has a latch at the top and one at the bottom.
Here is a picture of the finished run. It is a pretty good size but with 25 chickens it needed to be.
Here is the stall in the barn that we will use for the coop.
The inside of the coop with the wiring up. This is also a picture of the brooder that they were in for a while after we moved them to the barn. When we first got the baby chicks we had a smaller brooder and kept it in the basement. Got pretty stinky so at about 6 weeks they got moved to the barn in this bigger brooder. Now they are big enough to be in the coop and run. Isaac lets them out during the day so they can free range. It has been really good for the kids to learn and become more responsible.

Back Deck

When we decided to put French doors on the back of the house we knew we would have to build a place to walk out and down. I gave my suggestions as the kids and I were leaving for one of our many trips to AL. When we came home after our four day trip this is what my hubby and our contractor decided on. I was speechless! This was more than I ever expected.
Bryan did most of the work himself...with help from our boys and our contractor/friend.
Here are Timothy and Elijah helping lay the floor of the deck.
Below is a picture of the pattern we decided on for laying the floor of the back deck. Bryan came up with this and I wholeheartedly agreed.
Isn't that beautiful?
Here is a picture of the final product. We have already enjoyed the deck and look forward to having family and friends over for lots of fellowship on the back deck. 

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Mother's Day 2015

I LOVE being a mother! I am very thankful that God changed my heart when I was 19 years old and now I am following His will and not my own plans. His ways are definitely much better than ours!!
My parents came up and was able to spend Mother's Day with us. I am very thankful that I get to spend Mother's Day with my mom. I am blessed to have her as a mother!
Here is me and mom. Now below are Mother's Day pictures from 2011. I love looking back and comparng pictures. :)
Here is me and my 5 blessings in 2011. They have changed so much!
Here is me and my mom in 2011. Memories are great! I pray that God will help me to be a Godly mother and be the mother that my children need. I want to lead my children to know God greater, know Him in a personal way, hear His voice, and follow Him all the days of their lives. 

Porch Swings

Before the house burned We had a white porch swing. That swing was very special to me because a dear friend gave it to me. You can read that post here. For a house warming gift my parents purchased these swings for us. These are Amish swing and glider and we love them!
All the kids enjoy sitting out on the front porch enjoying our swings. Thank you mom and dad!
I will always miss the first swing but thakful that I have pictures and memories. Now these swings will have memories and stories that we can share with others. Our prayer is that God would use these swings for His glory. For sitting down and reading His Word, laughing, sharing His Word with others, or for quiet moments soaking in His beauty. 

Friday, July 10, 2015

Timothy Turns 6!

Our Timothy turned 6 in April. He was very excited about his birthday! Thought I would share a few pictures of him.
Here is a picture of him doing school with his taboggin on. Cutie!
Bryan's dad and mom (Pop and Gigi) came up for his birthday and brought him this wagon. He loves it. Him, Elijah, and Joanna have the best times with this wagon. Thank you Pop and Gigi for such a fun birthday present. :)
He also lost his first tooth at the end of April. He has lost another one since this picture.
We had cupcakes with sprinkles for his birthday. He wanted white cake with vanilla frosting and sprinkles...so that is what he got.
This is after a soccer game. We went to eat lunch at Dairy Queen and he got a kids meal with an ice cream cone. That is his favorite!

This little man is a huge blessing and joy to us! We are very thankful that God saw fit to loan him to us for a time. Our prayer is that he will grow into a godly man that loves and serves our Lord with all his heart, mind, soul, and strength. 

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Easter...Past and Present

I am so far behind on post. Wanted to post about Easter so this is completely out of order. Maybe one day I will catch up...or not. :)

Below is a picture of the kids this Easter. I am so crazy about these five fearfully and wonderfully made blessings! As I was cleaning out my inbox on my email I came across a few emails from 2010 that were  off my phone.
Look what I found! Below is a picture of Easter 2010. This was right after we moved to Tennessee. I cried when I saw this picture. One, because the kids have grown up so fast. Two, because I remembered all the pictures we lost in the fire. Some never to be replaced.
As a family we have so many reasons to celebrate...life, pictures, family, and most of all Jesus who is alive and well. If it were not for Him we wouldn't have anything to celebrate. He is amazing! Thank You Jesus for coming to earth, dying for our sin, and raising from the dead!! Thank you God for your Love and sacrifice!

Monday, May 18, 2015

My Haircut

Sarah and I have donated our locks a couple of times in the past. The last time we did it Joanna was not even a year old. Last summer Sarah was ready for a hair cut and it wasn't long enough to donate but we still got it cut. :) The first of this year I was to the point of needing and wanting a hair cut but wasn't sure if mine would be long enough.
In February I made an appointment and went in to see if it was long enough. It had to be 8 inches and we decided to cut 10 inches. :) 
Here is my 10 inch ponytail that was cut and I sent off to Pantene to be made into a wig for cancer patients.
One of my friends from church works at the salon I went to and she had her hair cut that morning. We thought it was a great time to have a picture together. ;) As you can see my hair cut was much shorter than I was expecting. Has taken time to get used to it but I am enjoying having short hair for now. ;)

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Kitchen Table

Here is our Amish built 10' dining table. We really like it. Very nice when family is here and we can all sit at the same table together! There are five chairs on one side, two chairs at each end, and a bench on the other side. This table also has three drawers on each side. We have been using the drawers for games and school stuff. 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Joanna turns 4!

In January we celebrated Joanna's fourth birthday. On her birthday we we celebrated as a family and enjoyed spending the day with her.
I made cupcakes for us and to take to church to share with her friends. 
Each of our kids got her something for her birthday. They all like getting gifts for others and it is so sweet to watch them give to others.
Then grandparents came up and helped us celebrate!
Joanna loved opening her gifts! 
Pop and Gigi gave her a "Ziggle" and she loves riding it! We had basketball games that day and in between games we went to Davy Crockett State Park. They gave her the Ziggle there and she was able to ride it on the pavement. 
We enjoyed the time at the park. The weather was nice and the kids enjoyed being outside. 
Here is another view of her birthday cake. After ball games we went back to our house for cake and ice cream. Lots of fun celebrating our baby turning 4! 

Sunday, May 10, 2015

4-H Public Speaking Contest

Isaac and Sarah started 4-H this year. One of the things they had to do was give a speech to their group. Then they were able to compete in the County Speech Contest. 

Sarah receives her first place ribbon for 6th grade.
Isaac receives his first place ribbon for 7th grade.

They both went on to compete in the sub-regional speech contest. Isaac won the 7th grade contest and Sarah placed 4th in 6th grade. Very proud of both of them! For Isaac this says a lot....when he was 4 years old he started speech therapy and continued therapy until we moved to Tennessee. God has done great things! 

Friday, April 24, 2015

Some Family Come For A Visit

These girls love spending time together. We all were excited when we knew that my cousin (Dodey) and her family were coming for a visit. 
Here are all the kids! What a full house...full of laughter and making memories. 
Here is Dodey and I posing for a selfie. ;) She is the closest thing I have ever had to a sister. We were always together growing up and now we try to keep in touch the best we can. We had a wonderful time with them. Took them to visit the Amish, Isaac and Sarah had basketball games, and lots of play time here at the house. :)

The Completed Kitchen

Here is a view of our completed kitchen. Very pleased! The bar stools are benches that we bought from an Amish man. Love his work. We also bought our table and chairs from him.

We are so blessed! We wanted a big kitchen because that is where we spend a lot of our time. The kids and I eat all three meals at home each day. I love to bake and we like having meals with family and friends. Already making lots of memories in this kitchen. :)

First Christmas in Our New Home!

Last Christmas (2013) was different than how we usually celebrate while living in Tennessee. It was good just different. Since we didn't have our own home we went to AL so we could spend Christmas with family. 

This year we were able to get back to our routine. :) This was our first Christmas in our new home and we were very excited! My parents arrived on Christmas Eve and we exchanged gifts with them and enjoyed spending time with them. Then we opened gifts between our own family on Christmas morning. We fixed a nice meal for lunch and then Dad and Mom had to go back home. :(
Here is my dad opening gifts from us. 
Mom opening her gifts.
Isaac got a set of Legos.
Sarah got PJ's.
Elijah and Timothy waiting for their turn to open presents.
We got all 3 boys a set of tools.
Joanna got Mickey Mouse PJ's.

There were more gifts to be opened and we were very blessed with each gift. Each and every year we try to focus on the True meaning of Christmas and point our kids to Jesus!