Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Quotes: I helped.

When Amanda got back from the grocery store, she was impressed to find that the kitchen was spotless, everyone was dressed and that the dishwasher was even running.  Caleb was put in charge and did great.  Amanda said, "He's so much like your brother!"  Uncle Joe likes a clean kitchen too.  Caleb comes from a line of men who know how to help in the kitchen.

When I got home we were hanging out in the kitchen with Ben and I asked him if he helped at all.  He said,
"I helped.  I cleared my place and got dressed."
Ben is a little bit more like his dad.

Quotes: My not helping

Yesterday Amanda went to the grocery store and left the kids home alone.  Shube was right next door so don't freak.  Amanda said the kids could do whatever they wanted, they just needed to clean up the kitchen from breakfast and get dressed.  Sitting her highchair, Lucy replied,
"My not helping. My a baby."

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Fat lip

Ben got a couple of fillings on Monday.  Because of all of the numbing, he bit his lip.  Now he's dealing with what you see below.

This was yesterday.  It's bigger today.  He's on some antibiotics though.  We'll hope he starts to feel and look better soon.

Monday, July 16, 2012

5 Years of Molly Pearl

Last week Molly turned 5-years-old.  I am so thankful to God for who she is.  She is a sweet, kind and lovely little girl.  We got to do our annual birthday breakfast on Saturday.  It was a lot of fun to spend some time with just her. She is currently very interested in Winnie the Pooh.  For her birthday we got her stuffed animals of Pooh, Eeyore, and Piglet.  On the packages we put that they were each from one of her brothers. After the party I asked her if she liked her new stuffed animals.  She said,
"Yes, I love them, because I love my brothers."
I told the boys that story as I was putting them to bed.  I said when you're looking for a wife, if you can't find one that loves you and thinks you're as great as your sister does, keep looking.  They thought that was pretty funny.

We look forward to many more years of Molly in our life.  She brings us daily joy unlike any of her siblings.  We love you Moll Doll.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


I wrote about Caleb and Lucy in the water.  I think this video demonstrates what I was referencing fairly well.  Enjoy!

Vacation '12: Alpena

After the U.P. we drove over the bridge and headed to my mom's in Alpena.  My mom has the place for sale, so this might be have been the last time that we were there as a family.  Tricia's family was there for the first part.  We lit off fireworks, swam, played in the sand, swam some more and generally had a great time.

One of the highlights of our swimming everyday was watching Lucy learn to go underwater.  This consisted of her throwing herself in the water, looking to us like she was drowning and then eventually emerging.  He has no fear.  At first this was scary.  But eventually, we got used to it.

Caleb didn't though.  He was the rescue crew.  Whenever he was near her, he would pull her out.  Caleb loves Lucy and is by far the best at watching over her.  He's going to be great with the new baby too.

We also took a glass-bottom boat tour of some of the shipwrecks in Thunder Bay.  This was a fun way to spend some time out on the water.  The boys are really interested in the shipwrecks so they thought it was great.

Thanks for having us, Mom!  It was another great time in Alpena.

Vacation '12: The kids

My time with the kids over vacation was so rich.  They are all changing so much and growing into more of who they really are.  Usually when we spend such extended time together, my nerves are often worn.  This time though, it seemed as if those times were few and short.  I was thankful for this.  There were times when each of their personalities and individual selves stood out.  I think these photos give you a peak.

Quotes: Lucy

We stopped in Sault Ste. Marie at Joni's dad's place for the night on our trip.  It was a great and free stopping point in the U.P.  When we were setting up the PUP and getting ready for bed, we heard Lucy say, "Boys, my comin' in yo' bed."  She's something else!

Vacation '12: The U.P.

We have returned from a great vacation to Michigan.  It was a wonderful time.  We spent the first part, about three days, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, better known as the U.P.  We camped for two nights in the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park (The Porkies).  Amanda and I camped here when we were first married so it was great to come back with 5+ kids.  Our campsite was great.  The picture above is from the back of the site, overlooking Lake Superior.  The kids spent lots of time on the rocks there.

Our first day was spent hiking to a few of the more accessible waterfalls.  Our kids all wanted to bypass the "DANGER" signs and get as close as they could to the falls.  Thankfully, the U.P. is rather sparsely populated, so we didn't have any problems doing that.

One of my favorite spots of the whole trip (and Amanda's top) was a falls that emptied directly into Lake Superior.  It was absolutely beautiful.  This picture doesn't do it justice.

We spent lots of time on the shore of Lake Superior searching for cool stones, skipping stones and watching Burley learn to swim.  That night we went to the Lake of the Clouds.  It is an amazing overlook.  The Porkies is truly wilderness.  We said many times that it was amazing how few people were there.

After the Porkies we drove to Tahquamenon Falls.  So much different from The Porkies, it was packed with people.  It is much closer to population centers and it was a holiday weekend.  It felt much more like Disneyworld.  We even had to wait in line to see the falls.  (The line was only about three people deep, but it was funny.)  When Amanda and I came here 12 years ago, we almost had the whole place to ourselves.  We were tired after a long drive so didn't spend much time there.  It is an impressive sight though.

We were so thankful for the few days of time together as a family.  We reflected on the majesty of God in his creation, especially in huge and overwhelming areas like Lake Superior, Lake of the Clouds, the Porkies and the many waterfalls.  I stood in amazement at my eight month pregnant wife who hiked, slept outdoors and through it all cared for us with a smile.  A great trip!