Monday, June 16, 2014

Moment of Truth

If you've ever had a baby you know about that moment. The one where you hold your baby for the very first time. You look into their face and think, "Whoa. I've been waiting for you. Here you are. I love you!"
Here is that moment times six.

Olivia made you a dad.
Emma Claire made you glad.
Your faith grew stronger with Addison.

Isaiah gave you son number one.

Mia showed you a true strong will.

Eli gave you no time to chill.
We love you our big strong Manly Man.
I couldn't ask for a better mate and more perfect father for our kids.
You are wise yet humble, strong yet tender, and kind and handsome to boot.
Thank you for choosing me, loving me, and giving me our children.
You'll always be my frog prince first, but you rock the roll of daddy.
Happy Father's Day!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Pigtails and Crewcuts!

It's the simple things you don't think of that become nearly impossible when you have six kids. Things like "running to the post office," painting nails, and getting haircuts. Trying to get everyone together and all needing a haircut at the same time is key. If I didn't do it this way I'd basically live at the salon. Today was the day. It needed to be last week, but the big girls were gone to camp.
The boys needed cuts a few weeks back, but I was trying to wait until school was out so we could all go at the same time. After about an hour, nearly $100, and a few dumdum suckers the littles were all sporting new hairdos.
All the kids have pretty hair, but my Addi has had really long hair for the last several years. Today she donated it to locks of love. We decided to do it once a year at the beginning of summer that way she can grow it out longer, then  be cooler in the summer after the donation. They cut off 10+ inches, and she still has quite a lot of hair. This will be so much easier on her being able to take a shower on her own, fixing it every day, and just being cooler. She was really nervous about it, but in the end she really likes the new cut, so she's really happy she did it.
Before we went in I had Addison pose for me. That girl LOVES taking pictures! She said, "OH YES! I for SURE want to remember how I looked before I got my hair donated!" Here are a few of the pictures she liked best.
I mean, we're talking waste length even over the shoulder! SO long!

Wanting to be sure I could see her face and her hair she fluffed it up and said, "OK. How's this??!"
Finally, a shot of just her pretty pretty hair that was still in great health and so pretty even in the wind and after a 45 minute drive.
A group before shot RIGHT IN THE SUN. Isaiah said, "I'm smiling Momma, but I can't open my EYES!!!"
First up was my two babies. Mia's hair grows REALLY slowly and is REALLY thin. The poor girl wants long hair so badly! We're still working on the sides growing in as much as the back so she doesn't have a mullet and we're ALMOST there. Today she just got a trim. Little Brother just needed a good short summer cut. They both look so much older with short hair!!
Obviously they both don't mind haircuts as long as it's in a cool chair like these, eating a sucker, and watching movies.


Next up was Addi. She was feeling nervous, but was still OK with getting it cut. She just wanted to be sure she'd still have SOME hair left. After the first cut she was fine. She saw that she would still have normal hair, and now she LOVES how it looks. She says she looks MUCH older. I won't tell her I think it actually makes he look younger.
Here she is getting it all brushed out and ready for ponytails. You can see they had to put several boosters in because otherwise it was too long to cut while she sat down.
Getting the ponytails in. They did four since she had so much hair.
Measuring each ponytail. It has to be at least 10in for locks of love.
Once all the ponytails were in the stylist took a picture for their facebook page.
Making the first cut!
Cutting the last ponytail!
All of her pretty hair will bless someone SO much!!
While she was going I also had Isaiah in the other chair getting his summer cut! That boy has TERRIBLE cowlicks. Notice I said cowlick(S). His poor hair stands on end most of the time. This time he got a great cut from one of my favorite kid stylists. He looks so stinking cute!

That's Brubbs with his back to me in this picture.
He LOVES getting his hair cut! He'll tell me(in his little country voice, "Mauh-ma, I need a haircut SOON!" It may have something to do with the Thomas trains and fire engine chairs, but I think he also likes a nice clean haircut.
Once they were done with Isaiah they started Lulu who wanted a short bob. Here she is with Addison just finishing up. I just realized I never got a picture of her by herself because I was watching Eli while she was getting hers cut. It's really cute though and will be great for hot summer days.
Addison with her hair and new hairdo. She was actually looking at the stylist who was taking her picture when I snapped this one.
Looking all cute for summer!
Last but not least was KK. This crazy girl has gone from waste length hair she wouldn't brush to ultra short hair that wouldn't stay down. Right now she's decided to try and grow it out enough for a good ponytail. She had to have the back trimmed up today because it was stacked a lot the last time she got a haircut. Here she is with her cape and sucker.

This girl is a mess but so beautiful and funny!
AND, the AFTER picture! So thankful for a great place to go for all the kids at the same time.
Now it's momma's turn!!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Ain't No Lie. Bye Bye Bye.

I know many of you are wondering about the current state of my health. That statement is somewhat sarcastic, but there have been many of you who have asked, so I wanted to keep you sweet little dears in the loop...
Today I met with the surgeon for my pre-op appointment. He did some last minute question answering, checked everything out, then sent me on my way with a surgery date set for next Tuesday morning bright and early. By bright and early I actually mean dark and while everyone else is still sleeping. Ha!
I'll be having a partial hysterectomy(they'll leave my sweet little ovaries) as well as several ligament repairs. If all goes well I should be able to come home by late that afternoon. The recovery time is about the same as having a baby. He told me today I'll probably be up and around pretty quickly, but shouldn't return to everyday regular life for about 6 weeks.
Many have asked how I'm feeling about all of this. The answer is numb. It doesn't really seem true yet. I'm sure when I wake up and there are parts of me missing it'll start to feel real, but right now I'm still in shock that it's happening. Like, for real, happening.
I'm mostly worried about how my life will look for the next few weeks. My right-hand-lady, Aunt Steph, is currently living out of town working on an opera. She's ultra mega talented, and for some reason wants to be successful at something OTHER than being the worlds greatest aunt! We are so excited for HER, but that means she'll not be able to help at all with the kids while she's away. I'm not sure if you've noticed, but we have six kids. That makes finding a sitter we can afford that actually WANTS to watch all six of them together(which is how we like to keep them) a pretty big task. At this point I have no way of knowing what I'll need help with. Because Manly is basically self employed he only gets paid when he works. That means there's no sick leave/pay. So, we are on the hunt for all the help we can get. If you'd like, you can pray that this will all work out great for us. That our children would be taken care of, and that I'd be able to rest in the thought of them not needing me while I heal.
I'm also mulling over the fact that this is, indeed, the end of my childbearing days. Oh, believe me, I know that most of you are rolling your eyes at the thought of this being a tough thing for me while my house is running wild with six children. Bottom line, it IS. I know our baby days were over when Manly had his surgery a while back, but now they are REALLY over. And that's fine. It's just tough.
My heart is so thankful that God allowed my body to hold out and carry all of the kids. I'm so thankful that He prompted Manly to make the decision for Eli to be our last baby. I KNOW that He(The Lord) knew what needed to happen. I KNOW that this is in His plan. You have NO idea how grateful I am that our family felt completed when our little red caboose joined our family. My heart has not yearned for another baby. I know that some day, in years to come, I may feel a sadness about no more babies, but I'm thankful that our home and our hearts are filled with the joy our six kids bring us each day.
So, it's with hope for good health in the very near future that I bid adieu to my poor overworked uterus. It's been good to me all these(ahem) 33 years, but I'll not be needing it anymore.

Friday, June 6, 2014


Our Mia has had several accidents in the last few days. The latest ending us up in the ER this afternoon. I was telling one of the nurses that I think it's a combination of her being extremely strong willed and the littlest of four girls. She wants to do EVERYTHING they do, and is too strong willed to be told she's too little.
She's now sporting a huge knot on her head complete with nice big cut, two swollen busted lips, damaged gums(and likely damaged front two teeth), and a broken nose(which is swollen and bruised). She'll probably have black eyes tomorrow, because they were already starting to look dark tonight when I put her down for the night. I'll spare her the future embarrassment and not post a picture of the poor little thing, but she's looking rough. She's tough, brave, and still just as stubborn and sweet as ever. Love that tiny Moose.
In other news we made it through our second day of #oursmittlesummer14. Want to see more of our adventures? Follow me on Instagram.

Thursday, June 5, 2014


Have you ever just needed a laugh? No, I mean a rolling around, tears running down your face, can't breathe laugh? Sometimes it'll hit me all the sudden. Usually when I'm a little past exhausted. Tonight it was around 10:15. I sat down to browse Facebook and clicked a link(beware there are some parts with yucky language.) I just about wet my pajama pants!
After that there was no turning back! It felt so good just to laugh and laugh and laugh. I read some autocorrect mistakes which are always funny. Then I just joked with Manly(who, it should be known, is hysterical). Afterwards I though. Whoa! It's been a long time since my cheeks hurt like this! That was a GOOD laugh!
Don't take things too seriously ALL the time. Be sure to take the time to gut laugh every once in while. Since it's throw back Thursday I've provided some pictures to aid in your assignment!
Manly's aviator sunglasses broke while were at Sam's yesterday. He jokingly picked them up and put them back on. That's when we realized aviators are really just old man glasses with tinted lenses. HA! I told him he looked like his Grandpa, but in truth, he still looks cute!
I wanted to try them on too, but when I did I was just reminded of what I looked like in 7th grade. Don't believe me???
Me in 7th(ish) grade. My two childhood  bff's Crystal and Emily. We liked doing pics at JC Penny...
Nice. There's a reason I didn't go on many dates. Ha!!!
Seriously? This is...sad. Look! We had three way bff necklaces!!
See??? Hey, look! I got contacts! Praise the Lord!!!
The last time I needed a laugh! Ha!!

I've got my EYE on you! Hahaha!
Lulu getting her crazy face on. Cracks me up every time.

Last, but not least, Eli at about 6 weeks looking hysterical. Love this pic of my sweet babycakes.


So, it was a TOUGH school year, but it looks like we've made it to the end! It ended up being a GREAT decision to put the girls in public school. They did great both academically and socially. It was by no means perfect, and there are LOTS of things I would like to change, but I did get myself on the PTO board, so maybe I'll have a hand in making a few changes myself. Ha!
Here's a look back at the first day of school.
They've grown up SO much!
Here are a few pictures from the last few days
My Lulu after her awards ceremony. It did her heart some good to win awards for her efforts.
These are Olivia's awards. To say that we were proud of her academic achievements is an understatement. She won awards in all subjects, and even got a perfect attendance award! The award we are most proud of is her character award. We knew our kids were smart, and would be well behaved in school, but the fact that others see the good character they have is an answer to prayer. We've always wanted our kids to be little lights in a world of darkness. We're so so glad that they are, indeed.

Olivia had three teachers this year as they begin changing classes to prepare them for(GULP!) middle school. This is her reading teacher. Olivia was one of only five fourth graders to test at a 6th grade plus reading level. She was so proud of Olivia. Thanks, Mrs. Walter for encouraging Olivia to read!
This is probably Olivia's favorite teacher, Mrs. Young. She teaches writing, which Olivia LOVES to do. Liv said that Mrs. Young is such a calm peaceful teacher that it makes her feel calm and peaceful when she's in her class. I'm secretly hoping that all the rest of the kids will get to have her as a teacher. You can tell that she really loves her job as a teacher.
This is Olivia's homeroom/math teacher, Ms. Abram. She was sent from heaven to transition our Lulu from being homeschooled to her first time in public school. She's down to earth and straight forward. A great combination for Olivia. I'll always remember the first day we met her and she took Olivia by the hand and led her right into the cafeteria and introduced her to the class. She's been the perfect teacher for Olivia.

Olivia getting a presidential academic excellence award.
Sweet KK with her teacher, Ms. Heathscott. I had NO idea how KK would do in public school, but she has blossomed into such an amazing little learner. She's made SO much improvement! She LOVES her teacher! I think she may cry on the last day of school because she'll miss her so much. Mrs. Heathscoot saw the potential in KK, and really worked hard on pushing her to succeed. We're so thankful to her, and have nothing but great things to say about her!

KK also won good character awards. Two of them, actually. The helping hands award, and the yearly all-around good character award. We're so glad God put our kooky KK in our life, and we have really loved watching her really grow into an amazing big girl this school year.  
KK getting one of her awards. She gets SO excited to win things!
Addison with her teacher Ms. Dowdy(who obviously loves each and every one of her students.) and her student teacher Ms. Christina. Both were great, and Addi had a nice time. I should be honest and say that she also felt pretty lonely throughout the year and mentioned missing her brothers and sisters quite a few times, but I think that's probably pretty normal for a middle child in K5.
Addi's group of kindergarteners gave a sweet little program instead of an awards ceremony. They were so CUTE! Here they are singing Hip Hop Bunny.
They did have a short award ceremony where they gave each child an award in the room afterwards. Here's Addi getting one of her awards.
I tried to do some fun things to celebrate the final day of school. We walked home one day, had ice cream, and on the last day, went out for donuts before school. Here's everybody with their loot.
Last day of school! Lulu and KK cried when we pulled out of the parking lot. Addi said, "SUMMER!!!"


Little Brother on attack with the garden hose.

KK loving sprinkler trampoline.

Mia and Eli playing at the park.

Brubbs and KK at the park.
The first fort of the summer using Addi's nap mat.

Livi got inked! Just kidding. She just got a sheet of press-on tattoos from her teacher.

The kids attire while helping dad set up the pool! Just waiting on a filter and it will be READY!