Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Meditating on Life

On Saturday I went to a funeral of a man I knew of, but did not know. His life was worthy of celebration and of mourning for its loss. I am always so impressed with what one person can accomplish in life. He had lost his family to war, had become a soldier at a young age, married, had a family and lived a full, compassionate life. He had shown his family what it meant to be happy and good. Many people came to honor him. Whenever I go to a funeral, I reflect on what I have done so far, what I am doing and what I want to get done. Sometimes it takes remembering that life is short to appreciate the time we have here on Earth. As I care for my small family I see how precious time is and what a special job I have. Lately, Jane explains what she learns at preschool, sings songs, and helps me with Maurie. I asked her today if she wanted to run an errand with me and she replied, "Yes, because I am the oldest." Where did my baby go? Maurie is officially sitting up on her own and crawling. She spent some time today pulling herself up on her feet with Jane's toy table. She will walk early. She is six months old, but she is still fits into many of her three month old clothes. She is thirteen pounds and loves being with me the best...I will take it while I can. Time is slipping through my fingers and so is the time with my small children. When I was a kid I was always waiting for something to happen; now I am wondering how I missed an event. 

As I reflect, I believe that if someone says that I was kind and a good wife and mother at my funeral, I will be satisfied. I hope to do many things in my life, but I hope they are never more important than loving God, my family and my neighbor. 

What do you hope someone will say about your life? Do you feel like your life has purpose right now? Anyone have a life motto? What has gone by too quickly for you? 

Here's to living well!


Friday, March 20, 2015


It is easy to describe what has been on my mind lately...buying a home. It is one of the most consuming things I have done in a while. I have been reading a ton and any free time is spent researching homes, mortgages and building options. It is all overwhelming and I will be grateful when it is all over. I have to admit that I want my home to look like it belongs in a Better Homes and Gardens magazine and Cody is more concerned with having land and a heated shop. We both have long lists of what we want. Finding a home that fulfills both our wishes is proving difficult to find and expensive. I don't know what the future holds.

What would you not want to live without in your home? What is the most important thing to you about a home? 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Family Vacation-The Dells

The Dells were a blast. We stayed in a condo at Glacier Canyon Lodge (a part of The Wilderness Resort). Anyways, we shared the condo with our good friends--the Stapps. They have children close in age to ours and they are fun, awesome people.


We didn't ever have to get kids in and out of cars because the condos were connected to the indoor waterparks by skywalks. 

The condo had a full kitchen, two bathrooms and a living room area. The space was perfect for the amount of adults and children and the length of stay.

We didn't have to eat out the entire vacation which saved on cost. We planned all our meals and ate really well.

The kids played really well with each other and had a lot of fun in one of the kiddie pools, the hot tub and the family raft rides. 

The adults actually got to have fun too because we took turns watching kids and babies. Cody and I got to ride "The Hurricane" and the "Black Hole" together along with a few other fun water slides. Also, Emily and I went on The Hurricane slide four times together and got to walk and talk leisurely up the stairs...FUN!

The water dome area had an awesome wave pool and a comfortable area to get some Wisconsin Winter rays.  Maurie even took some heavy waves without crying which meant the whole family was on a tube together...more fun.

We also got to eat at Red Lobster after the trip, which was a treat. 


Jane cut her toe and ripped her toenail the first night. She acted like someone was going to cut her open when the lifeguard tried to put a band-aid on her toes. The blood made it worse. 

Two of the water park areas were too big and claustrophobic for me. I didn't feel like I could watch Jane well enough in them. They were also very noisy.

Jane found a band-aid in the kiddie pool that was not hers!

Maurie did not sleep longer than a four hour stretch both nights and had to sleep in our bed.

I couldn't stay awake later than about 9:30 pm both nights! I was the one who had big plans to play games and have fun when the kids went to bed. =)

My feet hurt from walking around barefoot and it was hard to keep up with Cody as he literally run up stairs. I am out of shape! =)

The trip was a major success! What does your ultimate family vacation look like?



Jane's Birthday

Jane turned four years old! We hosted a tea party-themed birthday party. It did not go the way I pictured, but I think the kids had fun. Jane dressed up in a pretty pink dress and white cardigan and was very excited about all the tea sets. I collected mini tea sets that were themed when I was young, and I have saved them all these years so that I could share them with my daughters. I made chocolate cupcakes with strawberry frosting at Jane's request and we had apple juice as our tea and ate "tea" cookies. I spent so much time trying to create a photo backdrop to take fun "photo-booth" pictures that I did not plan games very well. The photo backdrop didn't turn out as well as I had hoped either. Overall, I didn't have enough fun activities and I am pretty sure the photos didn't turn out like I hoped. Thankfully, four year olds are not big critics of birthday parties, so only I came out of the experience frustrated. We did do some dancing, duck-duck goose, and a relay game. After this party I have decided that we will do family birthday parties unless there is something really specific and simple that my child asks for. I got really stressed out about the party and was pretty disappointed afterwards--and Jane would not have known the difference had I not thrown a party. I get pretty grandiose ideas that are hard to pull off for people with a lot more time and money than I do. I will post pictures of the party once I get them downloaded from my camera.

More importantly I wanted to highlight Jane a little. Jane has a gregarious personality. She is loves being around friends and has a wild imagination. Jane likes to make-believe Frozen scenes or scenes from Sophia the First. She has gotten used to quiet time and I love to hear her playing in her room. It has been very healthy for both of us to have this time. Jane is very loving and affectionate. She gives hugs and kisses all the time to Cody, me and Maurie. She is learning volume control right now and runs around the house like the furniture and open space is an open jungle gym. She stops moving only when she is sleeping or when she is watching a favorite show or movie. Jane is mostly helpful and obedient. It is when she has a lack of food and sleep coupled with over-stimulation that a less composed Jane emerges. Jane forgives me so quickly when I have lost my temper or have not checked my emotions. She recognizes when I am not feeling well or if I am stressed out and tries to help.  I also appreciate her energy and determination. I fear I will not be able to show her how to handle her impatience since I still struggle with this. I am so grateful Jane came to our family. I told Jane about the day she was born and about her birth. I think I will do that on my children's birthday every year. Jane was the perfect person to come to us at the time she came. I love you Jane Bowman.

Have you ever had a child's birthday party go south? What is most distinct about your firstborn?
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