Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Memorial Day Weekend: Part 2

Good morning, Pisgah National Forest!

Camping with the kids was so much fun, but it also meant late nights and EARLY mornings!  Josh took this picture after a 5 a.m. wake up call with Eden - they were on their way to the store to buy a sound machine in hopes that night 2 would result in a little more sleep.  

This is the very hike that Josh took me on the weekend we got engaged!

Caleb was such a good sport!
So very thankful for ten beautiful years of adventures with this guy!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Memorial Day Weekend in Western NC: Part 1

"Are you sure you wouldn't rather just camp in the back yard," I asked on Thursday afternoon ... with plans for a camping trip to the mountains after a hectic/stressful week at home (including a newly broken and casted arm for Caleb) still quite vague.  It just seemed like so much work!  My sweet husband is really not sentimental about ANYTHING, but I could tell by the look that he gave me that we were GOING TO GO CAMPING IN LINVILLE GORGE and that there wasn't much use in discussing it.  

Ten years ago, this very weekend, a handsome young medical student packed up a bouquet of wildflowers, a guitar, a couple of rings, some freeze dried Pad Thai and a tent and sped to the wilderness of the NC mountains to ask a girl to marry him.  She said yes and they said "I do" just 5 months later.  Now WE are six...and Josh just had to share our mountain adventure with our four little sidekicks.   And so...the 10th anniversary of our engagement looked a little like this:

According to Josh, all trips to western NC begin with a meal at Waffle House...
Next Stop: Gem Mountain to hunt guessed it...GEMS!

No new gems on my finger this time around, but we did end up with bags full of uncut rubies, emeralds and amethysts! be continued...

Sunday, May 25, 2014



Elise:  Creekside Elementary Field Day!  My sweet girl was so determined to wear all her protective gear for the sun because the P.E. teachers asked them, too.  Here she is with her classmates Marcus and Isaiah in the sponge relay.
Caleb:  Yup, broken bone number two.  This time, a fractured humerus from a fall off Elise's bed.  There were no monkeys jumping on the bed...just one little boy who lost his balance, fell backwards, and caught himself with his elbow.  Ouch!
Lucas:  Current style - writing his name with a lightening bolt "s"
Eden:  Knew this phase was coming!  

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

An impromptu picnic dinner

So...I suppose we've been feeling a bit restless and spontaneous lately (oh, and stressed!)...probably a combination of the beautiful spring weather and the fact that we're not exactly sure what we're doing with our lives after Josh finishes up his summer session classes in about 6 weeks.  Recently this combination of forces has resulted in quite a few impromptu evening outings to Eno River State Park for the chance to unwind, explore, unplug, and enjoy some family time together.

With the cool evening breeze, the sound of the river babbling nearby, and the intoxicating smell of honeysuckle in the seems just a little more carefree.

Monday, May 19, 2014

One Year Old!

What a joy it was to celebrate sweet Eden's first birthday as a family!  What a precious gift she is to us!

Here's my best attempt at recapping the day:

6:30 A.M. - Elise, Caleb, and Lucas all burst into our room ready for cake and singing and presents! We decide that making pancakes and getting dressed should be first since Eden is still asleep.

7:30 A.M. - Eden is awake at last! Josh and the kids hear her babbling and walk up the stairs to get her singing "Happy Birthday!"
7:45 A.M. - Breakfast is served!  Pancakes with fresh blueberries and raspberries.  (Thomas candle supplied by Lucas.)

One more raspberry, don't mind if I do!
First time licking the beaters!  Truth be told, when it was actually time to eat her cake she would not even open her mouth for the whipped cream.
Some Sicilian favorites for dinner!

Don't let that whipped cream on her fingers fool you, she would ONLY eat the plain strawberries that were on the side of her cake!
Probably the first and last time that everyone BUT Eden will be super excited to open her gifts!
Yes, it's true...We are soooo in love with you!  Happy first Birthday, sweet baby Eden!

Sunday, May 18, 2014


Elise:  We had the nicest girl time together this week.  We started by going to get our hair cut...she decided she that having long hair was hot and so she asked for a short cut (this the day after she claimed she was going to grow it and grow it and grow it forever!)  I think it's so cute!  (...and so much less fuss for both of us!)
Caleb:  Catching pop flies in the yard with Josh!  (Josh will make sure to enjoy this brief period when the kids are in awe of his batting skills...though clearly Lucas was more interested in picking his nose.)
Lucas:  A boy and his trains.  Diesel got quite a work out on the trail at Eno River State Park!
Eden:  My baby turned ONE this week!  I know she can't stay little forever, but sometimes I wish she would.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Sunday, May 11, 2014



Elise:  Screen time is an extra special thing in our home, but Elise will sometimes get the chance to write an e-mail or work on something for school after the boys are in bed or during rest time on the weekends.  Here she and Caleb were working together on writing a could we say no?!
Caleb:  Springtime has brought us a host of cool nature finds in our big back yard!  We are not really pet people, but a few hours with a snake or lizard or toad in a bucket while my boys collect insects and create shelters is something even I can handle.  (Oh right, as long as I don't have to touch it!)
Lucas:  This boy melts my heart AND makes me crazy...every day!
Eden:  Big new skill of the week...drinking from a straw!  I loved watching the big kids be super impressed with her.