Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Christmas Eve He’ll Never Forget

001
His first kill. December 24th, 2010 age 7. When asked if it made him sad he smiled and said “no, I can’t wait to shoot a deer”. Atta’ boy!

Friday, December 24, 2010

I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas

Up in these parts it doesn’t take much to dream of a white Christmas. We are blessed with an abundance of snow to enjoy.

christmas and deer 050

Along with some wildlife in our backyard.

Anson and Paige, (but mostly Anson), has helped to make us a white Christmas IN the house too.

christmas and deer 060christmas and deer 064christmas and deer 067christmas and deer 068

Paige wanted to give Ava something to look at from her bed.

christmas and deer 069christmas and deer 072

Anson’s ginormous one for his door and as many as he could fit on his window.

christmas and deer 074christmas and deer 077christmas and deer 078

Who needs a wreath when you have snowflakes?! Even I got in on the action once I remembered how much fun it was.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

FINALLY!!!

Here is the living room paint job. I still have to do some touch up but have lost motivation. eerrghh.

thanksgiving 025

Before..kinda…not a great picture

christmas baking 001

After..yay!

christmas baking 003

Love it!!!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Baking Day!!!

5 moms

10 kids

9 varieties of cookies

4 hours

Chaos? or fun? We say FUN!!!!

christmas baking 005

Getting started. Sarah and Jill (above), Orpha and Karen (below)

christmas baking 006

christmas baking 008

We resorted to throwing some Kix and pretzels on the table for the babies. Pictured is Luke, Sophie, and Ava. 6 of the 10 kids were under 2.

Thad was enjoying some time away from the other kids.

christmas baking 013christmas baking 014

Everyone (the kids that is) started falling apart about 11:30 so we stopped for lunch. The girls got to eat downstairs at the bar, they thought that was pretty cool.

Abby, Greta, Halle

christmas baking 018

Peanut Butter Balls

christmas baking 019

Fudgy Mint Cookies

christmas baking 020

Peanut Butter Blossoms (?) not sure if that’s their name.

christmas baking 021

PB Cup Cookies

christmas baking 022

Turtle Pretzels

christmas baking 023christmas baking 025christmas baking 026

Thad and Sophie rockin’ out!

christmas baking 027

Lookin’ yummy

christmas baking 029

Little Leif, all tuckered out and ready to go home.

christmas baking 030

Thursday, December 9, 2010

November

Obviously it was a busy month for us. But I thought I’d take a break from house project pictures and let you see what else has been going on this month.

ansons bday and house 017

Anson’s 7th (wow) birthday! Paige couldn’t stay out of the boy pic, sigh, what do we have to look forward to?

ansons bday and house 015

Anson got his first gun for his birthday. Not sure whose more excited, him or Jerem. Okay, probably Anson.

thanksgiving 008

Jerem’s parents braved the flu “epidemic” that was going on at our house and came up for Thanksgiving. It was a nice, quiet weekend with them.

thanksgiving 014

So, I think that’s about all I have for pictures from November. We finally have space to keep Jerem’s china set from his grandparents so we used that for the first time for Thanksgiving dinner. It felt kinda special eating off of something other than our normal dinnerware.

Stay tuned, baking day pics coming next!

Monday, November 29, 2010

The Story

I feel as though I have gotten ahead of myself in showing you pictures of the house. Truth be told I just haven’t had time to write, so I threw a few pictures up to keep those of you going crazy        (eh-hmmm tandis) at bay. But I think I should start at the beginning in telling you about us getting our house, hopefully in doing so you will be encouraged in the little wants and desires in your life and how our Father knows all about them.

It is no secret that we have been looking to move out of our trailer for the last few years. This past spring we started looking at land with the intention of buying possibly this summer or next and working towards putting a new double wide on it. I found myself getting quite impatient a number of times thinking that maybe we should just put one on our lot in Williams instead of waiting for the right piece of property to come along. I am not proud to say that I acted very childishly and many tears were shed on my part thinking we’d NEVER get out of the trailer. In June I finally realized that the Lord was teaching me a lesson. He was (and is) in control, no amount of worrying on my part would change that. In fact, it would just make me more miserable. When the time was perfect He would make it possible for us to get the land or house that was perfect for us, that’s all there was to it. Sometimes I’m glad I’m such a black and white person, because once I realized all this, it was easy for me to stop worrying about it. He would take care of us, He always has, end of story. Until that time came He would give me the grace to make our trailer the best home possible. At least it WAS a home, WITH a yard, AND a healthy family. I was ashamed for complaining.

In late July, maybe early August I’m not sure, the kids and I went over to a friends house to swim for the afternoon. Another friend was there with her 2 kids and as the afternoon went on we decided to have our husbands join us for an impromptu bbq. We were sitting around visiting after supper and the conversation turned to houses and if we were seriously looking at anything. “No, there’s just nothing out there in our price range that doesn’t need a lot of work right now” was our answer. “Did you hear the Kalli’s are moving? I think they’re listing their place this week. He got a new job in NC so they have to sell. They have a nice place”, replied one of the couples. My heart started to race a little bit sitting there. I knew the house they were talking about. I had done back up day care for the Kalli’s and stopped by their house afterward to get paid, I knew it was a nice place. It had been a few years but in my memory it was a gorgeous house. I had to have a little self talk in my brain right then “don’t get ahead of yourself. remember who is in control, just pray about it. don’t bug jerem that you HAVE to go look at it.”

A couple days later Jerem asked if I checked to see if it had been listed online yet, I hadn’t (I was very proud of myself for showing the self control in not checking). So I checked, it was there and way out of our price range. My heart kind of sunk, “there’s that” I thought. At this point Jerem would normally not even pursue something that we so obviously could not afford, but what did he say? “I think I’ll give the realtor a call, it wouldn’t hurt to look at it. We’ll pray about it and if it’s supposed to happen it will” So we looked, and fell in love. Anson asked us if we were going to buy it and I told him it was a big decision and a lot of money, we wouldn’t know for awhile. He asked if he gave us one of his dollars if that would help us buy it. Yes, I almost started crying at this point.

We went into it knowing what we could afford and made the commitment that we were not going to go out of that amount. We didn’t want to get in a position that we were trying to make it work just so we could have the house, rather we wanted to be in the Lords will and felt that by sticking at the amount we said He would bless us because of it. It was no surprise that they couldn’t accept our offer. They had just listed it and wanted to see if there was any other interest. We totally understood and at this point had the complete peace that if this was the house the Lord wanted us to have it would be ours, if not it just meant there was something even more perfect out there for us. 

About 3 weeks later I got a phone call from someone quite out of the blue asking if I would be interested in watching her little boy 4 days a week. He is two months older than Ava so in my mind it was perfect. 2 kids on the same schedule with a mom that works school hours and has summer and school holidays off. Watching him would give us the margin we needed to not be stressed out if we didn’t sell our house right away. At this point we felt that the Lord was starting to line things up for us in ways that we never saw coming. I found out about a loan program through the USDA that would give us a lower interest rate and lower our monthly payment considerably. Which enabled us to raise our offering price a little, definitly not much, but a little. They still needed more than what we were offering, so we continued praying. About 4 days after our second offer we got a “this is our final offer” from them, and of course we had to decline knowing it was still far out of our budget. We felt that there was a chance maybe they’d come back in the spring if they hadn’t sold it and accept our offer, but not before then. I was all settled in to one more winter in the trailer.

Two days later I got a call from Jerem, “they accepted our offer” he said. “nuh uh…you’re just trying to get a rise out of me, it’s not gonna work” (see husbands, if you’re reading, this is why you can’t ALWAYS joke with your wives!). I could hear him grinning on the other end, “no, I’m serious. they said they have to take the appliances if they’re going to accept our offer, but they’ve accepted it”. Well shoot, who cares about appliances, we figure that out…WE GOT THE HOUSE!!! So, back to praying about the appliances, nothing’s too small for the Lord, right? Two months of endless paperwork and phone calls, faxes and emails the house was officially ours. They moved out a month before we moved in, and left EVERYTHING except the fridge. I have goosebumps reliving the last few months.

So, now is the time I share with you a few of the “wants and desires” that are part of this house. Things that were not “needs” per say. You’ve seen pictures of the kitchen. That is the biggest desire in my book. I love to cook and have always dreamed about having a beautiful kitchen. A year ago the kitchen did not look like that. A year ago it was vinyl flooring and dark cabinets with a wall where the bar counter is. Last January they did a major kitchen remodel not knowing they were going to be moving 6 months later, but the Lord knew. And He knew whose house it was going to be. Yeah, goosebumps. The house has 10 acres. TEN! We were hoping for 3 or 4 acres in the country someday…but 10?! They left their kid’s wooden swing set complete with a pirates deck as our kids call it, those things aren’t cheap. There is a HUGE deck, another thing we’ve always thought would be nice to have. And a two car garage. A luxury that borderlines as a “need” up here in the north woods, but since we’ve never had one you obviously can live without it. We were hoping to someday have enough room for a big bookcase for all our books that were in storage, we got a whole WALL of built in bookshelves. I could go on and on..but I think I’ve shared enough.

Whatever it is that you are in need or want of this year, bring it to the Lord. Don’t stress about it. He who cared enough to send his Son to die for us, the One who has the whole world in His hands, cares enough about us to give us the home we’ve always dreamed of. Don’t limit Him, nothing is too big or small.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Before and After

Okay, this is my first official before and after room. I am SOOO happy with the way it turned out. Still have a couple things to do to it, but it won’t get done for a little while.

new house 005

Before

drum roll please….

 

After!

2010_01230036 

2010_01230037 2010_01230038 2010_01230039

My favorite part. The curtain rod which was my moms idea. Total cost for the room…$0.00. We sponged on our border and the animals are wood that my brother cut out.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Shutterfly

I’m writing a little plug for Shutterfly. I found a place that said if I write up a blog about them and my experience with them I will get 50 free Christmas cards. It’s worth a try!

Shutterfly is always having great sales. I have gotten quite a few photo books for free that have made great gifts! I ordered our Christmas cards from there last year and just LOVED the way they turned out. I can’t wait to take pics around our new house for our 2010 card. Go here to see their cards.

I also really like the photo calendars seen here. What better way to share family memories with loved ones throughout the year!

I’m already excited to design our card this year, just thinking about it. They have so many great styles to fit different personalities. So, go check out Shutterfly today for your Christmas card and gift needs!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A Little Teaser

Okay folks, for those of you who JUST CAN’T STAND IT!! any more, I am showing you a few pictures. Good thing I’m such a nice person, because if I weren’t feeling so guilty for not putting pictures up I’d wait until everything was just the way I wanted. Nevermind, that might take a few years. SmileSo, ignore the boxes, mess and lack of d├ęcor and enjoy the pictures.

new house 004

Our room

new house 005

Anson’s room (border is coming down and it’s being turned into a camo/hunting room)

new house 006

Paige and Ava’s room. Paige LOVES all the purple and has organized it just the way she wants it.

new house 007

Temporary t.v. placement to keep the little ones occupied.

new house 010

Looking out the front door

new house 011

Basement (working on sitting and play area.)

new house 015

New dining room table thanks to the generosity of Mark and Gwenn Johnson, they just got a new one and gave us this one

new house 012

Couldn’t have done it with mom…so glad she came!

new house 017

Our awesome bookshelves. Can you tell we have little ones around?

new house 019

Back yard from deck

new house 020

Deck

new house 022

We are still trying to figure out the living room set up. I am going to be painting it a dark tan.

new house 023

Going up the stairs to the 3 bedrooms

new house 024

My room…I can’t wait to be settled and fully enjoy this kitchen that I thought I’d never have. The Lord has said that He wants to give us the desires of our hearts…and we have seen this so much with this house. We had our need for more space met but above and beyond that so many “wants” taken care of. That’s a whole other blog in itself.