Just some extra pictures…

so just some extra pictures I had lying around from our vacation…

here’s Sophia on one of the rare moments she had to herself and she was great, she happily played in the sand by herself…

until I got the camera out and she started to pose, the little monkey!

I always buy the kids a new notebook for the cottage for them to draw in… here they are one morning, all busy… I love the memories they make

Gotta love being able to sleep anywhere!

Auggg! My kids are drinking pop! But it’s a cottage treat, and at least there’s no artificial colour or flavour. ūüôā

I wish I could remember why Will has that lone tear, but I don’t. It’s just him after a moment…

Sarah and her buddy Jay just hanging out…

just a cute little beach boy, our friend from next door…

his sister enjoying light-sticks on the beach at 10:00pm with our kids when all good little children should be in bed…

I love this pictures – the clouds are in the same part of the sky that spawned the Goderich tornado later that day…

And I’ll leave you with two sunset pictures which join the 100 we already have, but the sunsets at the beach just never seem to get old…

Thanks for looking!

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Enchanted Berries and Gobelygook

Another summer vacation spent on the shores of Lake Huron, playing with the kids, biking, swimming, hanging out with friends, reading novels (I read 7 in 2 weeks!!!) or just soaking up the sun on the beach. ¬† Every year’s vacation is different, this year Jason had only one week of holidays, but the kids and I went up a week early and that worked out OK because we had friends at the cottage next to us. I kinda hoped they would help me out a little, but they far exceeded my expectations when they watched my kids swim while Sophia was napping, chased my umbrella down the beach and even had us over for dinner. ¬† I was very blessed. ¬† ¬†As an extra bonus, their kids kept our kids occupied all week and they all got along and had a great time playing together. And that’s when¬†Gobelygook juice was born…

Erik and his friend Abby mixed up some kind of juice (lemonaide, water & soda water) and ‘sold’ this drink to the other kids… ¬†and they all actually drank it out of the little¬†Dixie¬†cups from the bathroom. ¬† Soon all sorts of drink stations were popping up around the cottage…

And then not to be out-done, Erik had to bump it up a notch…

He was afraid of someone stealing his oh-so-secret recipe you see and then some other drink’s followed with names that went from bad to worse. ¬† ¬†And did you know that orange juice ferments? ¬†I didn’t, until just before we left I found a plastic juice container that was filled about 1/2 way up with orange juice and who knows what else. ¬† It bubbled¬†strangely¬†when I grabbed it and when I opened it, the lid made a loud pop and it fizzed like crazy, and yes, it had¬†definitely¬†turned. ¬† ¬†Next time I better keep a closer eye on the kids.

But the kids found lots of other ways to entertain themselves (so mommy could stick her nose in a book. ) ¬†One afternoon I gave them garbage bags and watched them dig ponds industriously for ages…. I feel so lucky to have gotten this shot of Sophia…

Of course with daddy (Go Big or Go Home Colley) the digging takes a whole new meaning.  This little project

progressed to this…

which ended up as this…

Our good friends from Michigan were up by then and I admired how 2 grown men could take such pleasure in trying to figure out how to line a big hole in the beach with plastic, keep it in place and fill it up with water. I was very very very proud.

We also do alot of biking at the cottage… there is a historic light-house just the right distance away for biking and while I have in the past made Sarah with her little legs and training wheels bike this, thanks to Grandpa we could pile the girls into a bike trailer this year and that was wonderful and much safer. And Sarah knows that you don’t eat the berries on the bushes on the sides of of the road because as she gravely informed me, they are enchanted. ¬† I think that somehow Disney might have steered her wrong on this one,but if enchanted has the same effect on her as ‘poisonous’ would then I’m pretty sure she won’t eat those berries.

We were sad to leave, ¬†but rested and relaxed with lots of good memories of friends and fun and walks on the beach and playing in the park and watching Erik water-ski. ¬† Although it makes me want to be on permanent vacation in a shack on a lake somewhere, it’s good to be back at home.

Oh and stay tuned for pics of this little monkey’s before and after hair-do!

 

 

My thoughts are with those…

who are picking up the¬†pieces¬†after Sunday’s tornado that ripped through Goderich and Ben Miller. ¬†We were packing up at the cottage just 30 minutes north of Goderich at the time it happened, but obviously knew nothing about it until an hour later when on our way home we were stopped at a police road-block and had to turn around. ¬† ¬†The officer was helpful with directions and said that there had been a tornado… which completely shocked us as although there had been storms earlier in the day, it was bright and sunny by then. ¬† ¬†And even on the out-skirts of town we ¬†saw trees with limbs ripped off, a huge solar panel shredded and debris everywhere and then we found out that it had hit Ben Miller too.. ¬† a tiny little town with a beautiful Inn that we normally drive through on our way too and from the cottage. ¬† ¬†Trees were down blocking the road, ¬†roofs were ripped off and I was grateful that our timing hadn’t been off. ¬† ¬† The first information we¬†received¬†on what had happened came from ¬†101.7 Fm and on their website you can see pictures of the destruction… praise God there was only one fatality.

It does make you stop and think about how one minute everything is fine, and the next minute everything can change and in this case clearly not for the better. ¬† I am thankful every day that I can trust completely in God my Saviour, ¬†I know that I am in his hands, my children are in his hands, ¬†and the Bible is clear He is all-powerful and nothing can happen to me that He has not allowed. ¬† ¬† If ¬†He does allow times of suffering, I know that they will be used for His glory, even when I can’t see it. ¬† And again, ¬†He teaches me not to be anxious… ¬†in Philippians 4:6&7 ¬†he says, “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God, and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus”.

And isn’t that what we all want… peace in the eye of the storm? ¬†So my thoughts and prayers are with those whose lives were turned upside down, ¬† and in my heart I ‘m thankful that tornado’s or sunny skies, God is in control.

She’s not the first and won’t be the last

Jason and I are sad. Very very sad. ¬† ¬†See we’ve lost something we really loved and while we eventually will in all likely-hood¬†get it back, for now it’s gone. ¬† ¬†It started on Saturday when Sarah found a pair of small craft scissors, wondered if they would cut her hair, they did, quite nicely too, so she continued cutting until she had taken quite a huge chunk of her beautiful blond hair off.¬†¬† I think I was almost devastated.¬†¬† Not many people have hair like Sarah’s, golden, wavy,¬†I actually¬†envy her¬†hair.¬† She gets complimented quite often, and maybe that’s why she though enough was enough, she’s never been one to like being pretty (except for daddy of course).¬†¬†¬† So it’s going to have to get¬†fixed (after¬†our family pictures we have booked for Tuesday when I’m ¬†totally going to fudge her chopped locks) and she’ll end up with a chin-length¬†bob.¬† And so I’m sad I won’t be sending her to kindergarten¬†in cute piggy-tails or braids.¬† But¬†after my good friend Mary – who has been around longer than me and is much wiser – pointed out that everything happens for a reason, I am now feeling¬† cautiously optimistic that maybe a new shorter hair-do for Sarah might be easier come September when I have to get her out the door by 8:30 every morning.

And on the subject of looks and even though I’m sad that Sarah will be losing some of her natural beauty due to hair loss…¬† I like this article that my friend posted on her blog… how to talk to little girls… by Lisa Bloom. ¬†I myself have been guilty of focusing on little girl’s looks rather than then as persons, so I see there is some improvements I can make in this area.

So I know it will grow and it’s defintly not the end of the world.¬† It’s probably actually some sort of rite-of-passage for 4 year old’s with long hair and I can take comfort in knowing she’s not the first and won’t be the last little girl to chop their own locks!

Oats peas beans and barley grow…

They do grow, but not in my garden because frankly there just wouldn’t be room! ¬†Yes, this year because I don’t have enough things to occupy my time, ¬†I’m a proud partner and care-taker of a massive garden. ¬† ¬†My uncle and I are doing it together at his house and it’s been a lot of fun. ¬†As a child I remember working in the garden at home and perhaps not loving it, but now that I’m an adult and it’s MY garden, I have to say I really enjoy it. ¬†It’s just tough finding the time to go over to work in it and a little bit tougher convincing the kids that they want to go. ¬† But when they get there, they do just ¬†fine.

Here is a picture of it almost a month ago…

Yes, it does go all the way back to the poles that are for the pole beans and there is also a huge chunk of it over to the left behind the cedar trees. ¬† Massive. ¬† Now as for Sarah in the pictures I would have to say that she is the most interested in the garden and she’s a great helper – she weeds and helps pick beans and says nice things to the pumpkins …

Our pumpkins. ¬†This was one of our babies a month ago, he’s massive now, about 3 times the size and we have about 8 pumpkins in all. ¬† It’s so exciting and the kids just love watching them grow bigger and bigger and bigger!

We also have green and yellow beans in our garden- we ate a ton and I put some in the freezer – ¬†tomatoes, pickles, cucumbers, leeks, onions, an assortment of peppers, pole beans, zucchini and potatoes, beets and carrots. ¬† We’ve already eaten potatoes and beets and cucumbers as well as the beans ¬†nothing beats produce out of your own garden.

And now I have to put a plug in here to thank my uncle John because he’s been so kind to let me do this with him. ¬†I’ve really enjoyed the time spent working with him and the kids now know him much better and he gives them¬†Freezies¬†so they are huge fans… of his… and the Freezies.

So life continues on here. ¬†Yesterday we spend the day with my mom as she’s recovering from a tear in her¬†retina. ¬†And it sure isn’t fun for her to have to be lying on her right side ALL the time, for TWO week, ALL the time. ¬† ¬†I wish I could do more for her, but we are praying for her constantly and we know that God is in control and has her in His wonderful capable hands.

Back to produce, the most¬†interesting¬†of¬†subjects… ¬†today I did some peaches up for the winter. ¬†I made 2 batches of freezer jam and froze slices for smoothies and then made filling for 2 pies to freeze. ¬†It’s so cool what you find ¬†on the net because when I was looking for how to do this, somewhere ‘they’ said ¬†to freeze the peach filling in an empty pie shell and once it’s frozen, transfer it to a plastic bag, so when you want to make pie you just make the crust and plop your frozen peaches inside already in the right shape and then bake. ¬†Easy peasy. ¬†Someone was thinking and I’m always happy to benefit from other’s most excellent ideas.

Well soon there will be blueberries to freeze, tomatoes to do something with – maybe salsa? ¬† Potatoes to dig up, ¬†pears to can and pumpkins to turn orange. ¬†But that just seems like fall so I’ll stop right there.

I’m still enjoying my summer with my crazy kids.

A new baby

Well I’m glad to see I haven’t earned any “Most Boring Blog of the Summer” awards, although I probably deserve one. I keep meaning to blog, I have great intentions to blog, but then I go for a swim with the kids or go pick some more cucumbers out of my garden until the feeling goes away.

But this, this is blog worthy. My newest niece, born July 22 to Jason’s sister… she’s a keeper…

She’s just a little sweetie pie, we went over to see her again yesterday and here I am getting my baby fix along with her older brothers

She’s going to have to watch her step with two big brother’s keeping their eye on her! There is something so sweet about a little girl with two older brothers. ¬† ¬†Although it seems in our family right now big brothers are a perfect target for a pesky little sister, but I’m hoping that ¬†one day Sarah will appreciate her big brothers (or the friends they bring home). ¬† And hopefully the boy’s protective instincts towards her kick-in when Sarah starts school in September!

And I just have to share my failed attempt at a picture of all the kids. ¬†Even with Jason’s help we couldn’t convince Sarah to smile and so then end result, well here it is,

But it doesn’t matter, Sophia looked a little dazed and confused anyway ¬†so I’ll just have to keep trying.

So that’s all for this post, I will try to post more in the days to come, I promise!