Victory Joy Noel

It's a week late, but HAPPY 6th BIRTHDAY, VICTORY JOY!!

{The "rainbow cake" you requested -- or the closest thing I could find ")}

{You and Grandma "O" when you were 2yo - my how you've grown!}

{Your new bike -- I think you like it!}
someone remind me to do another post about the bike...

{Cowgirl boots!}

{Webkinz from Grandma "at the river" and handmade blanket from Gramma Jeanne}

You're growing into a beautiful young lady!

*You love all things pink & princess
*You have your mother's looks, and her attitude (what?!  LOL)
*You are learning your letters and numbers quite well
*You love to help with the baby, and even change diapers!
*You are a drama queen (see second comment)
*You sing all.the.time and often make up your own songs which a.l.w.a.y.s. talk about God and His goodness and love

I love you
Miss Victory Joy Noel!

I told her to smile pretty.


Seven Great Years

To the love of my life,

   Seven years ago today you made me the happiest woman on the face of the earth when you chose to marry me -- again. ")  My life just wouldn't be the same without you.  I'd have missed out on so much!  To name a few... Victory, Levi, Shiloh, Jericho. ")  I would have had Alex, and Chase, but even that wouldn't have been the same.  I think God for you each and every day.

~I'll love you forever, and always~

Happy Anniversary, Tim!


Pick Me Please!

MckMama is having a giveaway... Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2. Oh, how I would love to win! Click here to see how you can enter for a chance to win. And, if you don't want/need Lighroom 2, enter anyway and win one for me. ")


Nearly Wordless Wednesday

This all started with Victory throwing one of her classic crying fits. I made her laugh when I tried to get a picture of it. Then, everyone else needed their turn...


Is it Wednesday yet?

No? Okay, well, I'm posting pictures anyway.

The kids requested I take this picture:
Susie has a favorite spot to sleep - out of reach of the kids:


Blog Hijacking

Kristin & Jericho came over to see me (Steph) on Sunday night, and I got these adorable pictures. :)


It's Cold!

The weather outside is frightful! Wish a had a fire - that'd be so delightful. ")

It's hard to tell how much snow we got because of the blowing/drifting. Tim is frustrated because the battery in his 4-wheeler (which he uses to plow) has issues. It has enough juice to run the machine, but not enough to run the winch. That means he can't plow the driveway. He's been driving the Yukon to work because it has 4 wheel drive. His old pickup just doesn't have what it takes to get out of the driveway with all that snow/no traction.

We keep the heat pretty low in our home, but this week we've had to raise it a couple of degrees. Even Tim has been cold! I tell him he's getting old. ") He used to wear shorts to work all winter long when he was driving to Plymouth. He never wore long-sleeve shirts. Now, he wears jeans most of the time and it's rare to see him without a hoodie. ") But, I love that 'old man'!

On another note (and because it just doesn't seem right to post something with no pictures...), how many Jenga blocks can a two year old fit in her pocket? You might be amazed. ")

(Apparently you can't fit 8. LOL)


Wordless Wednesday

My beautiful cousin Shelly holding Jericho.


First time for everything...

Victory was making a lovely paper snowflake for the Christmas tree. Apparently the scissors won... None of our kids has ever had stitches for an injury before. Chase had a few in his mouth after his oral surgery, Levi had a couple when he had his hernia repaired, but Victory managed to do herself up good!





After hiding for a few hours she is now venturing out and becoming playful. I'm sure it will take her a few days to adjust to her new surroundings, but I think it's going well! A special thanks to Susie's friend Colleen for bringing her to us. Colleen, you are more than welcome to stop by anytime!

Several years ago we had a polydactyl cat named Hobbes (as in 'Calvin and Hobbes'). Since our new kitty is also a polydactyl (or as we like to call her - a pterodactyl *grin*) we chose the name Susie after Calvin's friend Susie Derkins.

Susie is about 7 months old so she will be part of our family for a very long time. ") We are all looking forward to getting to know her better!

[Photo credit: Victory took the top photo]


Christmas - Part 1

What a great day! The kids are finally feeling much better, and we were able to make it to our first Christmas. I didn't get *great* pics, but here's a few anyway. ")

{Victory with her gift from Auntie Sharon}

{Levi opening his p.j.'s from Gma Jeanne & Gpa Norm}

{Shi opening her book very.carefully.}

{My seester Sharon}

{Uncle Bill and Jericho having a nice snuggle during J's nap}

{Jericho with her new p.j.'s and stuffed giraffe after we arrived home}

All the *grandgirls* got p.j.'s that match, and the *grandboys* did too. The only difference is the boy's have a green camo background rather than pink. ") When I get a chance I'll post a pic of my kids in their matching p.j.'s.

We all had a lot of fun, the kids traveled well and are now all sleeping (with the exception of Jericho). Tim had to go in to work and probably won't be home until about midnight. :( Jericho is hanging out with me right now since every time I try to lay her down she throws a giant fit. Hopefully she'll be off to bed soon!

I'm thankful that we're all healthy enough to go to church tomorrow. I'm really looking forward to worshiping with my Calvary *family*. I'll have a new post tomorrow evening with some more news and pictures! ")



It's been a long week. With all the kids feeling good enough to play, but sick enough that they are touchier than normal, there has been a inordinate amount of whining! I'm looking forward to the day when we are all feeling great again! My cough is still lingering, but seems to be getting better. We've still got a couple of temps hovering in the 99.5-100 degree range. Thankfully, everyone seems to be on the mend and it looks like we'll actually be able to make it to my birth mom's for our first of many Christmas celebrations with family!

What I'm looking forward to most at this point is a girls night out at Steph's. The only places I've been in the last two weeks are the clinic and the pharmacy. It'll be nice to get out and spend some quality time with friends!

Enjoy your weekend! I plan to enjoy mine. ")


Random Pics

{Jericho and Squeakers at Cindy's}
Squeakers wasn't quite sure what to think of the baby. They were playing together the next day. It was adorable!

{Tim and me ready for my birthday date}
We went to Granite City. It was great!

{Shiloh and her battle wounds}
This kid needs a helmet - with a face mask! The bump on her head was from falling into something last week (we don't know what, and since she doesn't talk we haven't figured it out). The cut on her lip is from falling into the end table. Ouch!

{Jericho being a stinker!}
I think the smile on her face is telling. Think she knows she's a cute little stinker?


Just Sick and Some Cute Pics

Everyone here has been sick. Except Tim. Wish I knew his secret! I have a sneaking suspicion it has something to do with the fact he's not home for much of the day. We've also (sadly) been avoiding kissing. :( We're hoping it works it's way through before the weekend so we can spend Saturday with family celebrating Christmas!

In the meantime, enjoy these shots!

{The Fam}

{Jericho - 10 mo}

{Shi - 2 1/2 yr}

{Levi - 4 yr}

{Victory Joy - almost 6 yr}

{Chase - 10 yr}

{Alex - 11 1/2 yr}


It's a Fabulous Friday!

It's a great day! Tim had the afternoon off (which I always love!), and later this evening he's taking me out for my birthday dinner at Granite City.

In other great news, I got this fabulous "toy" that I can't wait to start playing with! Tim found it on an online auction and won it for just $12. He said he can smell the bread baking already. ")

Tomorrow I'm getting a visit from my cousin Jenny and her family. Can't wait! The kids (all 11 of them - hers and mine) will have a great time playing. And the adults will have fun visiting! Hope you all have a wonderful weekend.


Wordless Wednesday

Some days are just like this, aren't they?


Wordless Wednesday

I think this photo speaks for itself.
This is an actual flashcard from a set I bought for the kids.
Epic fail!


An Apology

I think most of you know that last week there was an "incident" in our household. Chase (our 10 yr old) ran away. The police were called. He was gone only about an hour and a half, but only by the grace of God. I have a screaming headache today so am in no mood or condition to type up the whole story, but I did want to share this...

In case it's tough to read...
Dear all that prayed

Sorry for running away. Thanks
for praying for me. Sorry for every
thing I did but I won't run away agian.

Yours truly,
Chase Loucks

More on this story later...



This is a word that often describes my attempts to be the woman/wife/mom that God intended me to be. One of my favorite musical artists is Chris Rice. On his album Deep Enough to Dream he has a song entitled "Clumsy". Here are the lyrics:

You think I’d have it down by now
Been practicin’ for thirty years
I should have walked a thousand miles
So what am I still doin’ here
Reachin’ out for that same old piece of forbidden fruit
I slip and fall and I knock my halo loose
Somebody tell me what’s a boy supposed to do?

I get so clumsy
I get so foolish
I get so stupid
And then I feel so useless
But You’re sayin’ You love me
And You’re still gonna hold me
And that You wanna be near me
‘Cause You’re makin’ me holy
You’re still makin’ me holy, yeah

I’m gonna get it right this time
I’ll be strong and I’ll make You proud
I’ve prayed that prayer a thousand times
But the rooster crows and my tears roll down (again)
Then You remind me You made me from the dust
And I can never, no never, be good enough
And that You’re not gonna let that come between us

I get so clumsy
I get so foolish
I get so stupid
And then I feel so useless
But You’re sayin’ You love me
And You’re still gonna hold me
And that You wanna be near me
‘Cause You’re makin’ me holy
You’re still makin’ me holy, yeah

From where I stand
Your holiness is up so high I can never reach it
My only hope is to fall on Jesus

I get so clumsy
I get so foolish
I get so stupid
And then I feel so useless
But You’re sayin’ You love me
And You’re still gonna hold me
And that You wanna be near me
‘Cause You’re makin’ me holy
You’re still makin’ me holy, yeah

Clumsy Fly Music (ASCAP)

The most encouraging part is that God is always going to love us, no matter how "clumsy" we are. Words I definitely needed to hear today!


This is funny... laugh!

Apparently there was an armed robbery and a man-hunt (helicopter search and all!) in my teeny-tiny hometown. When friends posted the news on Facebook I called my mom and let her know. I told her that I realized Dad was retired, but I didn't know he was that bored! She told me to let her know if the 'copter headed north (which is the direction of their house). When I posted that conversation on FB, no one responded...

So, okay, maybe everyone is a little stressed with the whole "man-hunt-helicoper-flying-over-our-houses" thing. But humor should lighten the mood, right? (Come on... please tell me you are at least chuckling a little to yourself at the thought of my dad, the retired Baptist pastor, robbing a gas station and hiding out in peoples yards?)

Like I said, I get that stress could make you overlook the obvious humor in my statement about my dad. But, once the hunt was over, I added this comment: "So I can call my dad and tell him he's in the clear? :P" And still no LOL's.

Is it my delivery?? Seriously, I really do hope you're laughing a little. This is funny!

And just in case that didn't make you laugh, maybe this will...

(Dad being himself at Levi's birthday party. I love this guy!)


Wordless Wednesday

Must have been a great nap to do that to her hair!


9 Months

(I can't believe my baby girl has been in my arms as long as she was in my womb!)

Jericho Faith
*9 months*

~have an adorable goofy grin

~army crawling
~eating solids (you can down a jar of veggies, a jar of meat, and some cereal all in one sitting)
~stopped napping
~sleep through the night
~pretty content and smiley

~love to be held
~love MOST to be held my mama
~talk (you can say mama, dada, grandma, grandpa, go, bye-bye, hi)
~weigh about 17 lbs
~have enough hair to get "bed head"

We love you baby girl!