Sunday, July 24, 2016


This afternoon, Monkey Toes and I dropped Gummi Bear off at camp.  It is a 5 day Girls Discipleship Camp that is 74 miles away from home.  For weeks, Gummi has been looking forward to this day. The hours didn't pass quickly enough today for Gummi, as she wandered around the house aimlessly, sighing heavily and moaning, "I still have soooo long to wait before we can go!"  We left an hour earlier than we needed to, just to pacify the child a little.  I mean, just look at that smile.  How could she possibly contain all of that excitement?

FINALLY we arrived!

We checked Gummi into her dorm and Monkey took a moment to say his goodbyes.

I was a bit of an emotional mess.  I wasn't just leaving my girl for the next few days, I was leaving a piece of my heart behind, as well.  I can't quite put my finger on it, for I know she's in great hands and will have a lovely experience.  I wanted her to attend this camp as much as she wanted to go, but the moment we turned and walked our separate directions, my tears began to fall.  I think it may be the realization that Gummi is not just getting older, but she is growing up into this amazing and beautiful person.

The theme for the camp is "Beloved" and it is directed by the Handmaids of the Heart of Jesus from New Ulm (some of our favorite sisters!).  When she arrived, Gummi was given this tshirt:

My heart is at peace.  Gummi will be exploring and discovering her worth as a Child of God and a Daughter of the King.  As much as I love her, our Heavenly Father loves her more.  She has been entrusted to Monkey and I, but ultimately, she belongs to God.

"How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!"   1John 3:1

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Easter Sunday

But God raised him up,
having loosed the pangs of death,
because it was not possible 
for Him to be held by it.
                                    Acts 2:24

Easter Vigil

Easter Sunday Morning

Our traditional game of Balderdash....

while the men sleep

Annual Family Easter Picture

Brothers and sisters:  If then you were raised with Christ,
seek what is above, where Christ is seated
at the right hand of God.  Think of what is
above, not of what is on earth.  For you have
died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
When Christ your life appears, then you too will
appear with Him in glory.
                                          Col 3:1-4

Friday, March 25, 2016

Good Friday

For God so loved the world that He gave His
only Son, so that everyone
who believes in Him might not perish
but might have eternal life.
                             John 3:16

He was despised and rejected by men;
a man of sorrows, and acquainted
with grief...
                                Isaiah 53:3

Then Pilate took Jesus and had him scourged.  And the soldiers wove a crown out of thorns and placed it on his head, and clothed him in  a purple cloak, 
and they came to him and said,
"Hail, King of the Jews!"
And they struck him repeatedly.
                                       John 19:1-3

Come now, let us set things right, says the Lord:
Though your sins be like scarlet, 
they may become white as snow; 
Though they be red like crimson, they may become
white as wool.
                              Isaiah 1:18

Pilate said to them, "The guard is yours; 
go secure it as best
you can."  So they went and secured the tomb
by fixing a seal to the stone and setting the guard.
                                  Matthew 27:65-66

The Sorrowful Mysteries

Amen, amen, I say to you, you will weep and mourn, 
while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief
will become joy.  So you also are now in anguish.  But I will
see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one
will take your joy away from you.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Holy Thursday

Love one another as I have loved you
                                          John 13:34

I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. 
No one comes to the Father except through Me.
                                                              John 14:6

I am the Bread of Life.  He who comes to Me
shall never hunger, and he who believes
in Me shall never thirst.
                                         John 6:35



Monday, January 25, 2016

7 Quick Takes: Family Update: Christmas Letter Style


 Pumpkin is in Kindergarten and LOVING every, single day of it.  She is 6 1/2 years old (you all know how important that 1/2 year is at this age!).  Her favorite days are when she is the helper at school and can bring a treat to share with her class.  She likes to draw, color, jump rope and take coffee breaks (with a sweet treat, of course!).   She is learning how to read, which is opening up a whole new level of independence for her.   Pumpkin exudes happiness (and a bit of bossiness) and loves being the youngest!

Sweet Pea is 7 years old and in 2nd grade.  She will be making her First Reconciliation in two days, which she shared with me yesterday, "I want to be closer to Jesus."  Bless her!  She'll be making her First Communion in April. Sweet Pea loves to draw, color (especially in her new adult coloring book she received at Christmas) and craft.  She is not much of a TV watcher, so she likes to be very active.She is in her first year of taking piano lessons and doing well. She still struggles with the loss of my Mom, but each day we try to work through that, sometimes with tears, but always with a prayer in our hearts.  She still remains one of my best helpers around the house - always asking if she can lend a hand!

Cucumber is 9 and is in 3rd grade.  She takes both piano and bass guitar lessons, which she greatly enjoys both.  She loves clothes (I'm blaming her God Mother for that!) and likes to play "fashion show" with her sisters, where she dresses them, helps them with hair and lip balm make-up. She makes friends easily and in the summer, can often be found playing football with the neighborhood boys. Cucumber remains our comic relief and is quite witty (we are working with her on when and where to appropriately use her wittiness!).

Gummi Bear is in 5th grade and is 10 years old.  She ran Cross Country last fall and is currently playing basketball.  She takes piano lessons and chose to play flute in the 5th grade band, which she absolutely loves.  We have to actually tell her to stop practicing the flute some days, just so she can accomplish other tasks.  She altar serves at church and is a school crossing guard. Gummi enjoys crafting, especially sewing, knitting and sketching.  She is growing up fast, teetering on being a little girl and becoming a young lady (it's making her dad a little uncomfortable!).  She is still a gentle and kind-hearted soul, who desires to help others.

Honey Bunches of Oats is 11 years old and in 6th grade.  He plays both guitar and saxophone.  Last summer he placed first in his age group at our local county fair talent competition, singing and playing guitar.  He went on to compete at the Minnesota State Fair.  He didn't place, but he loved the experience.  Honey Bunches also ran Cross Country this past fall and is currently playing basketball, which has become yet another passion for him.

Sweet Potato is a teenager.  Yikes!  He's 13, in 7th grade, and loves to be involved with just about everything.  He plays basketball, is a Student Council member, participated in Knowledge Bowl, placed in the school Geography Bee, altar serves, takes piano lessons, plays the trumpet and attended our diocesan Boys Discipleship Camp.  He's passionate about sports and statistics.  Despite being outgoing, his favorite activity remains being at home on a Sunday, watching football and being surrounded by his family, good food, and hanging out with his cousins.

Life is busy with six, active Love Bugs.  I have realized, however, that when we keep our priorities in check (God, family, work/school), racing around with the kids isn't so daunting of a task, nor is it something I resent.  With that being said, we also rely on much help from others.  If it weren't for family or teammates parents who are ever so willing to open up their homes or provide a ride when needed, we wouldn't be able to do all that we do. We are ever so grateful and extremely blessed for the many helping hands.
                "The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord."         Psalm 33:5
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!