Thursday, December 10, 2015

**La Loba Studios Dolls for our 3 Year Olds**

Anders and Joline are Three! 

I can hardly believe that we have 3 year olds already! These two are so much fun right now and their imaginations are blossoming with all sorts of fun ideas every day. To help encourage those sweet play times together we decided to get them a set of "twin dolls" from La Loba Studio on Etsy   I just have to give you a review of them because we have been so happy with them and are finding them to be very useful in our play and learning times!

*I was not compensated for this review; I simply want to share the love.

La Loba dolls are beautifully handcrafted and come with a set of clothes. We choose the super hero twins set but the shop sells so many beautiful sets and single dolls for boys and girls to give you a lot of variety. She even has a Frozen set for those of you who have kids who are totally in love with their Disney friends! The twin set I originally saw on her shop was a little different than what you see below and when I contacted the shop owner about customizing the girl doll she was so helpful and kind in our conversations. She happily created for us a girl doll that would look similar to our girl and with fabric colors that Joline loves all at no extra cost; unheard of! 

We especially love that the clothes are changeable because my two especially love getting their dolls dressed up and dressing up with them! They have affectionately named them "Max" and "Lyla" :D 

Much love from our big 3 year olds; happy adventuring! 


Monday, November 23, 2015

The year of potty and A&J isms//The jump from 2~3!

Anders and Joline, 
This coming Wednesday you will turn the calendar and begin your journey in the land of being 3. Daddy and I have been busily enjoying the fullness of your second year and we look forware to what your third year brings. 

Here are some things to remember about TWO! 

*When you have to go potty... 🎶 
Come on sing along moms & dads! :-) Thank you very much Daniel Tiger for that little diddy; it has consumed most of our conversations with the children for at least the first half of year 2. Oh the things we will do when we are potty training. Those moments of success are purely hillarious to watch your own excitement over it and theirs. We are thankful to say we will go into year 3 without diapers! 

*What's your name & what's my name? 

Naming anything and everything daily has been a big deal for A&J in year 2. They LOVE knowing a person's full name with middle name and all so they can repeat it over and over to each other and practice saying it. I think this is part of their advanced twin language skills growing up. When they were babies they would always say jumbled things to each other and then back and forth repeat it as if practicing the sounds; now, as bigger kids, learning their letter sounds they still love to practice those letter sounds off of one another and then proudly show off their skills when they feel like they've mastered the pronunciation. :-) Because I went to school for linguistics & English I'm kind of a nerd about how happy this process makes me. 

*1.2.3.Count with me! 

A&J both have a thing for counting. They love to sing their numbers and find books with things that they can count. We have spent a lot of time outside this year counting sticks, chickens, birds, trees, and time inside with our counting books. They don't always get the order right which is cute but that's ok because we're just having fun with what we can do with numbers. 

*Let's have a concert! 

Grab your instrument of choice and get up on the window seat or on the couch and sing as loud as you can! :-) At the beginning of year 2 this was really fun because A&J didn't really know many words then so their songs were mostly just noise with the occasional word thrown in their. ^bla mas rou duck maaa tractor nnnnnnnblaaaa booooaa!!!!!^ Now as we turn 3 these concerts are getting serious. Mostly a compliation of Jesus Loves Me and Buy Me a Boat. Oh boy! 

*Let's go on an Adventure! 

These two love to go anywhere with daddy & mommy and friends. They enjoy all kinds of places and seeing all the people and things we don't get to see on a daily basis at home. Their favorite right now of course is "a restaurant". They really don't care which one but they love to go out on occassion and have a meal outside of the house. (Don't we all!?) They are little people watchers for sure! 

*I want to help you

A&J both love to help whether it's helping daddy with farm chores or helping mommy fold laundry or cooking; they just want to feel useful and part of the team. We love to include them in as much as we can so that they will have as many opportunities as possible to see and feel and be a part of good satisfying work. They know that they can feel proud of their work right along with us. The lanudry piles might not be folded nicely or the goat feed may have been half spilled before it got to the goats but we are so thrilled that they want to work along side us that we won't discourage it and we'll cheer them on the way to learning new things. 

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

All In a Month's Time

We've seriously packed so much in the span between the beginning of May to the beginning of June and have been having such a blast enjoying the summer days already! Here are some glimpses into what we've been up to::

May started off COLD. Michigan...
And then the next day it was warm! Anders: "KeEMEeEE!!! Come see daddy HUGE WOODS!" :D

We finally had a really nice warm streak and soaked it up with sprinkler and all!

Raising chickens, turkeys, goats and in general playing on the farm has filled our days with fun and smiles!

Our visit to Boulder Ridge Wild Animal Park in Alto, MI today was an absolute blast and I would highly recommend it. They have so many animals to see and touch and then some all surrounded by beautiful countryside to boot. The kids absolutely loved it and we will for sure be back. 

Sunday, May 17, 2015

This Temporary Home

Spring has been busy here as we plant, grow, raise, and tame this plot of Earth we've been blessed with. Maybe it's the fact that our Children are {almost} 2 1/2 or maybe it's my completion of PT (so now I have muscles right!? ;)) either way this is the first spring that we've lived here that I feel strong enough to participate in this wonderful season. Oh boy does that make me so so grateful! You see, this house and this land is a treasure that my family and I love very deeply and everything we do here is just a reflection of what we are eagerly awaiting in the presence of Christ. Here is a glimps of what we've been doing around The Ranch these days. It is my prayer in sharing this with you that you would have a moment to be still and see God in the details of your own life, both in the intricate and the grandiose ways. 

Sleep well, 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Life Lately...

Here's a snippet of our life around here lately. Enjoy! 
Miss Jo... Getting WAY too big for her britches and certainly too big for mama's liking. :>) Full of personality that one is. 

Big A... Little hairy man at heart. He's already got the whole "get your mismatched clothes on run out the door as fast as you can to see your chickens while dad is busy with sister" drill down pat! 

Spring has sprung here and with it we're in planting season. Every good farmer has to put up an old dog kennel to keep chickens out of his strawberries right? :>) 
Yay! it's finally warm enough to wear spring dresses!! 

The big project around the ranch right now is building a fenced in area for goats and our garden. The posts are in, next we (and by we I mean Jared and his Dad ;)) will stretch the fence and divide the area into two sections. One for the goats and one for garden. Every year or so we will alternate the garden to the other side so that proper fertilization can occur. 

The goats came by for a home visit this past weekend while I was away in Chicago. Jared said the kids loved seeing them and they even got to share the experience with their cousins Fitz & Zuri. The goats are just down the road right now with their mama still for a couple more weeks so I will keep you posted when we get them. Such cuties!

Underpants!!!! Eek I don't know that I really prepared myself for this time in our lives but here we are. The twins are 2 1/2 now and I thought it was a good time to go for it. So far we have a few accidents here and there (boy am I thankful we have mostly wood floors in our house) but for the most part we are getting by pretty well.
I was able to go to Chicago with a few of our Jr.'s & Sr.'s from church this past weekend to visit Moody Bible Institute and explore the city. This is my 10th year working in the youth ministry but I have missed this trip the last 3 years so it was good to go again and see these kids enjoy their time and learn more about MBI. 

Tata for now my friends,