Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Windy City Project 2

I am still playing catch-up, but this was one of our favorite activities this summer, so I wanted to make sure I shared. We recently began attending a church that is much closer to our new home, and were thrilled to find out that they had a family friendly mission project happening this summer. It was a wonderful opportunity for us to serve alongside our kids, our new church family, and the organization we partnered with to complete the project. We worked with a group of teens from Lawndale, called YMEN, and together we served a few buildings in the suburbs that help people transition out of homelessness, and we also worked on the YMEN property in Lawndale.

Our family spent three days working on the Lawndale project. We got to help beautify an existing urban garden and to put up a new one, and participate in a sports camp and a VBS. Now, you can all imagine how helpful we really were, what with most of my time spent trying to prevent the kids from slowing the project down, and with the children chasing chickens more than they pulled weeds or moved dirt, but the beautiful thing was that everyone was okay with that. It mattered more that we were working to build relationships with our fellow workers and that we were teaching our kids how to serve God by loving their neighbors. Our boys loved the time they spent at YMEN, and we did too. We received far more than we gave (really, by leaps and bounds).

Since the projects were split between multiple locations, the only day that everyone spent together was Sunday. That day was spent at our church, worshiping together (outside!) and enjoying a great meal, amazing music, and lots of fun games. Aside from the time that we spent with out family in Wisconsin, this was probably my favorite day of the summer. It is such a blessing to see my kids excited about worshiping God and serving Him!





Can't think of a better way to spend our 11th anniversary
















Monday, 1 September 2014

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Goodbye Summer

This summer has been action-packed. In order to maintain my sanity and ensure that all three boys survived the summer with no severe wrestling/fighting over toys injuries we got out of the house a great deal. I dutifully took pictures of our many activities because I intended to blog, but then I was so exhausted by the long days I never got around to it. I may do some catch-up posts (mostly because certain aunties have been clamoring for pictures), but it depends on how quickly I can scrub off the sticky film that summer has left on every square inch of my house (maybe we will cut back on popsicles next year), and whether that will be done before our CRAZY Fall schedule starts up. Sports are going to drive me into my grave.

All that to say, here are the pictures from our last day of summer. We took a nature walk at a forest preserve and then went and ate lunch with Jeff in a new spot, the new building his group is transferring too. It is a significant upgrade in terms of scenery, as we were able to eat on a cool sheltered balcony instead of the usual windowless room decorated with outdated credit union calendars. We may be visiting Daddy more often in the future!







Tuesday, 26 August 2014

And so it begins, or Le premier jour d'├ęcole

Both of the big boys started school last week and Kenny is back in "Mommy school" (although he is quite eager to go to "Tommy's school").









Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Nic Birthday Blog-O-Rama

Better late than never...Happy Birthday Nic! We had fun celebrating our middle guy turning four. He got to choose a special breakfast (he went with a Dutch baby), and we took a rare trip to the movies to see the new addition to the Planes franchise. Presents and cake topped off the day's excitement.







Nic has grown so much in the last year. Not only is he TALL, but he has slimmed down so much in the face and looks so "boy" now - no more chubby toddler cheeks. He has been incredibly healthy so far this calender year, and it has been nice to go such a long stretch between hospital visits. Since he feels great, he was able to take swimming lessons this summer and is really looking forward to playing soccer in the fall. He will return to preschool when the school year starts up, and considering how much he flourished there last year we expect to seeing a great deal of growth socially and verbally this year. It has been such a joy to get to know him the more he is able to express himself, and I have been so blessed by his tender, comforting heart. When I'm sad there is nothing sweeter than hearing Nic whisper in my ear that he misses his Jjaja too.

Nic is a boy who is all about Cars (as in Lighting McQueen and friends), and it has been neat to watch his play expand to story telling, and I love watching him make-up games like "tractor tipping" (he pretends to be a sleeping tractor and then tips over when Tommy honks at him). The boy loves listening to music and is constantly trying to put something on. His favorite music is our VBS CD on endless repeat, second runner up is an annoying toddler songs disc; my only sanity saver is the occasional (too brief) Slugs and Bugs interruption. He also has a passion for sports, and loves to play tennis out front or get coached at Tommy's football camp in the backyard. We are so proud of our sweet guy and what a kind, compassionate, responsible boy he is growing up to be.