Friday, December 14, 2012

derek's favorite photo

Derek took Rowan out to play a week ago while Rigby and I were napping (another night of insomnia for this Momma).  It turned out to be one of those warm days in the middle of this so called "winter" Daddy and Rowan really got some good play time in.  Derek said he LOVES this photo of her so I wanted to make sure it made it's debut on the blog.

sprinkler fun...thanks to our neighbors!

our neighbors had a sprinkler system installed early in the summer last year.  our kids thought it was for them :)  the great part is that they run their sprinklers all day random run thrus became a regular occurance! 
here is a pic that Derek took one evening while the kids were running wild.  somehow rigby lost his pants...but that's no surprise.  it's his favorite thing to lose.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Youth Group Babies

Derek and I are youth group leaders at our church, so we always have lots of fun and crazy events we help host or lead.  In the pictures below we were having sort of mini olympics this summer. We had a bouncy boxing ring, a tug of war (below), and a giant tricycle race. 
It's fun being part of the youth group and getting to know all of the kids.  And I love the idea that our kiddos are growing up in the midst of it all...getting to know the high schoolers and enjoy all of the craziness that goes along with it.  It's such a blessing! 
Derek and I also both have weekly bible studies that we lead with our own small groups of boys & girls.  The group of girls I have are just amazing.  They are so young but are so mature spiritually...which is rare for that age.  We have our facebook group where we post prayer requests and funny comments or pictures...and today I had knee surgery and got texts from some of the girls telling me they're praying of me and will be thinking of me.  What thoughtful kids!  I just love these girls and am so thankful that we listened to God's tug on hearts a year or so ago when we were feeling called to get involved.  Yeah, it would be much much easier to stay home on Sunday nights and during the week when we have our teen studies...but there's so much blessing in the hard.  And it's not "hard"'s actually made my life better if you ask me :)

Sunday, December 2, 2012

rowan + cole

this was a few years ago...but needs to be posted.
we dressed up cole for halloween...i think he's a witch minus that hat.
rowan and cole are like best friends.
he lets her carry him around...which is funny
because he hates to be held.

cole even naps on rowans lap while she watches movies
or sometimes she carries him around in a basket.
and he allows it!

he's actually napping here.
rigby gets involved too.  you can see
he's given cole a horse and goat to sleep

5 year anniversary

We celebrated our 5 year anniversary this year!  Yay for us :)  We didn't make any "set" plans, but my mom and dad were taking turns watching the kids so we could have the entire day to ourselves.  Thanks guys! 
We didn't really know what to do with ourselves...we meandered around Valpo...went to a food tasting thing, cruised the town, got some iced coffees at Dunkin Donuts (I know, we're crazy) and then ended up drinking at the Figure Ei8ght Brewery downtown!  It might sound lame, but we actually had the perfect day.  It was just so nice to be able to spend some time together.just.doing.NOTHING.  We ordered a tasting platter of every beer they had and drank the afternoon away!  I think we were there for 3 hours or more.  We eventually walked somewhere for dinner and got a hotel room downtown Valpo (again, yes, we are crazy).
One day we dream of being able to go back to Mexico to relive our honeymoon; it was actually our plan to do it on our five year.  But instead we enjoyed a blistering day in Valpo (it was actually really really hot that day) drinking at a pub, not a swim up bar.  One day day :)

pumpkin time

We did our thing at the local pumpkin patch with the kids this year.  It's always a good time.  They get to ride the ponies and pick out their own pumpkins.  Rowan had a little meltdown over Halloween candy before we left, but other than that it was good times as usual.  Except for the fact that they weren't selling apple cider this year...I was not excited about that. 
No one was really into carving pumpkins either.  Rowan wanted her signature cat pumpkin, so we went with Hello Kitty this year.  And we made Rigby a Mickey Mouse one.  The seemed to rot extra fast my only pic is a little sad!
Mickey Mouse and Hello Kitty
and Mommy's No Face Pumpkin (I was sort of over it by then)

on our pumpkin mission

getting ready to pick!

Rig is showing off his muscles :)

Rigby wasn't too sure about the horse ride...
eventually Mommy had to walk beside him

But Rowan is a cowgirl at heart and
rode by herself this year!

Sucker face

This is what happens when you give a tired 4 year old a sucker on the drive home from Grandma Gora's... I know this might not seem post worthy, but for some reason I think it's hilarious!

NOT my idea

We recently had to change some light bulbs in our house.  Derek decided to give each of the kids a go at the ladder. NOT my idea...but I guess they survived and had fun.

american girl(s)

My mom, being the loving and grandchild spoiling grandma that she is, got Rowan the matching American Girl dress for Christmas.  So now her and her doll are twinkies.  The dress arrived on Tuesday and she wore it every single day this week!  She already made me remove the bow and sew it on "right" (because in her mind) it came upside down (as shown below). 
Everyone can take a sigh of relief now...the world is right...Rowan's bow is horizontal :)

Halloween...[better late than never]

We let the kids pick their own Halloween costumes this year.  Rowan and I did a little internet surfing and she finally settled on Annie!  Her first choice is usually something Princess related, but Rowan loves old movies, especially Annie, so I guess I shouldn't have been to surprised.  Her taste in old movies cracks me up because what four year old loves Pride and Prejudice?  Only Rowan.  She was walking around the house bowing and curtsying (sp?) like the woman of old after watching those movies.  She also likes Heidi or anything with Shirley Temple.

Back to Halloween! Rigby went with his staple boy choice for everything...Spiderman. He picked out his costume online as well and was super excited until it arrived. He was scared of all the padding and refused to wear it at first! But after some healthy bribery from Mom, he eventually came around.

before the funny wig...

and after :)

that' rig behind that mask...and of course you can't miss Annie


screaming in excitement before we started our trick or treating

this Momma opted for the stroller so I didn't end up carrying a very
large toddler version of Spiderman around!

I had to include this because Rowan looks hilarious.
And Rig is wearing one pink glove and one blue...I obviously wasn't ready
for cold weather at Halloween!  ha :)

mickey mouse parade!

We headed up to Chicago over the weekend for our annual outing with the Starkey's.  It's getting so much more fun now that both of the kids are old enough to get excited about parades and Mickey Mouse.  Rigby kept insisting we were going to see Mickey and Rowan would always disagree and say NO MINNIE :)  It was a lot of fun!

We got there early this year and managed a front row spot...which was awesome.  We even had time to walk thru the American Girl store since we were right at that corner on Michigan Avenue.  We were actually avoiding the store altogether because the day before we got an American Girl doll magazine in the mail and Rowan was having a heart attack over all the baby doll stuff.  She kept screaming "MOM THE AMERICAN GIRL HAS HER OWN DOLL", then she'd march away and keep flipping thru.  A few minutes later she'd be back..."MOM THE AMERICAN GIRL HAS HER OWN BED"...and then off she'd go again. This went on for like an was hilarious.  She was screaming in excitement over it!  Rowan doesn't even have a real American Girl doll, which makes this all the funnier.  We got her a doll from Target last Christmas that is the same size as one of the expensive ones...and we never even mentioned American Girl to her before.  But a lot of her little friends have them so she's up on the lingo, and she's been calling her doll "MY AMERICAN GIRL" for months now.  I guess what she doesn't know won't hurt her ;)

Our friend Peggy met us up in Chicago with her husband and baby girl (Baby Luci as Rowan says)...and they had just come from the American Girl store.  I was telling Peggy about Rowan's freak out over the magazine and how we were not going to tell her she was right next to the real deal...mainly because we can't afford anything in that store.  But Peggy, being the amazing and generous person that she is, asked if I'd let her buy something for Rowan from there...which is seriously SO PEGGY.  She is so nice, so giving and loves kids so much...there's just no one like her.  She ended up buying Rowan a purple doll dress that came with shoes, tights and a hair bow.  It really meant so much to me that she would offer and really enjoy doing something like that for Rowan.  Who does that?  NO ONE.  She could have bought her own daughter an outfit or something extra but instead did that for my little girl.  It makes me tear up just thinking about it.  Ah!

the fam!

front row seats baby!

their reason for coming...

mickey mouse!

and rudolph is always a show stealer too

they also loved this lion guy

rig, just being his cool self

rowan and her Aunt Peggy

mommy and the monkeys


after all the action

rowan and rigby with their buddy kylie...
and yes, it freaked me out having the kids play on this balcony

rowan's first american girl dress!

admiring the duds before dressing "Emily"...
I think she named her after our neighbor girl

happy as a clam :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

family pictures

we FINALLY had family pictures taken! we went to liz's family barn and shot some real quick one evening. it was sort of a disaster (at least for my hair!) but we did end up with some really cute ones of the kids. the family ones were all a bit blurry, but we're still printing and hanging them in our house anyway. :) here are some of the better ones...