Earth Days

We've been doing a lot with planting and digging and picking these days. We've planted a few pots of geraniums - they get huge here and grow all year. We've also put in some herbs and have an egg carton incubating in the laundry room. So far every seed has come up - a couple of zinnias, 6 tomatoes, a parsley, a cucumber, and a couple of lettuce plants. Olivia comes in quite often with a handful of things she has cut from the bushes and plants in the front yard. And the other day I came in to the bathroom to find all the towels smeared with slug slime. That was gross. She is a different girl from a year ago when she didn't want to even touch worms - now she pesters rolly pollies and pets snails and collects worms in thermos lids.They are learning the parts of the flower (thanks, Amy). And she has been wearing her gardening gloves everywhere (thanks, Grandma) - although it is a little awkward sometimes. She looks like she has some sort of issue with sun exposure, especially when she has on a hat and sweater too.
Pulling out the root bound bottom. (Wish I could have planted that second chin of mine in that pot!)
Sometimes it is a bit overwhelming how "be with" our kids really are. Really, could we be in more together planting? If they walk away from us in public, sometimes strangers point out "Do you see your kid wondering that way?" Well, of course I do - but I have no fear of them bolting - they are way too co-dependent. (Don't worry grandparents - we aren't letting them wonder off everywhere.)
There's the egg carton, pre-sprouted.
Enjoying being out in the dirt. Now, off to make some iced tea with fresh mint in it.

Still zoo geeks

We had a bit of a hiatus from the zoo with all our travels, but with all the babies there now we have a lot to see. Mike took the kids while I was still in PA.

And Joseph tried to knock himself out on a concrete curb. On the way out the door to the women's retreat where I was speaking I get a phone call from Mike that starts, "I just wanted to let you know what is going on." Apparently you can't really tell from the picture how big it got. Bummer is the dog knocked him down two days later and he hit the same spot. I think I'll just start making him put on his helmet every time he leaves the house.

A family post

This is mostly for family...not too much creativity, just memories of our visit. It seems like by the time we are on vacation, I forget about my camera. This time we got some shots - random and not always that great, but enough to remember by. I just regret not having more from our trip last month to Michigan.Like I said, not great pictures - but that's what we did - just move from kitchen to porch to kitchen to porch. Eating and chatting and relaxing.
These are a little out of order. And yes, we did actually wash the van on Easter Sunday - but as you can tell from the looks on their faces it was definitely recreation, not work. We were having a late lunch, so while hanging out in the yard we decided why not wash the (Veerman's) van - which was nasty from pollen.
Evidence of Easter (Also evidence of "the incident" - my mother missed the last one of these the day before we left and broke her hand and nearly broke her foot. Not fun.)

No, I'm not wearing white tights. My legs are really that beautifully white.

Easter morning.

Decent form, eh?
5 months

Cousins and oughta be's

Just before we left on our 2+ week spin through the SE US, Mike's cousin and kids stopped by for supper. It is a shame we don't live closer. Cousin Kiersten...of course Olivia is checking out the eggs - trying to use her xray vision to find chocolate.
Another unfortunate distance situation. Mom and Jan have been friends since...Motown was cool. This is Ellie, her granddaughter. She and Olivia made great playmates for the few hours we were able to be together. Not actually cousins, but oughta be.
Rachel and Camille. Joseph is outnumbered - only to be outnumbered again in August. And it hadn't happened by this picture, but my sister-in-law trimmed up his hair good since some other friends saw a picture of our kids and said, "Your girls sure are getting big." Come on, at least look at the clothes first!
Madeleine. My brother's. (By the way, Mouse, I think Olivia has worn the skirt you gave her every day since we got home. I don't think I will be able to get it off her long enough to make a dress out of it.)
We also spent nearly a week with the Veerman's who, I am sad to say, I did not get a single picture of. How does that happen? More highlights from our trip to come.

Four generations

The making of a generational photo shoot.

The perfect great grandmother - baseball in one hand, camera in the other.

Keep on turnin'

We've been on the road in more ways than one these days.

Chocolate eggs and Jesus risen!

There is a stage in a child's life at which it cannot separate the religious from the merely festal character of Christmas or Easter. I have been told of a very small and very devout boy who was heard murmuring to himself on Easter morning a poem of his own composition which began 'Chocolate eggs and Jesus risen.' This seems to me, for his age, both admirable poetry and admirable piety. But of course the time will soon come when such a child can no longer effortlessly and spontaneously enjoy that unity. He will become able to distinguish the spiritual from the ritual and festal aspect of Easter; chocolate eggs will no longer seem sacramental. And once he has distinguished he must put one or the other first. If he puts the spiritual first he can still taste something of Easter in the chocolate eggs; if he puts the eggs first they will soon be no more than any other sweetmeat. They will have taken on an independent, and therefore a soon withering, life. C.S. Lewis

Pray your celebration is rich - in all ways possible.
"For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer." I Timothy 4:4

You may...

...or may not want to sit on our couch.Sorry to be so absent here. We have been on the road for a week and a half and it will still be a week before we get home. Hope to be putting some things up here, but honestly we are mostly just enjoying time with family and friends. Looking forward to celebrating the resurrection in the morning.