Saturday, August 20, 2016

Happy Birthday, Sierra Elizabeth

 Holy smokes, this tiny little chub muffin is 14 years old today.

 And I can't even tell myself, "Don't worry, Mama. She's not *quite* 14 yet, you still have ~insert number~ hours left before the clock strikes that magic number in which your baby is one.year.older."

Can't even say that to myself, because she was born at 5:50 am, and as I type this, at 6:30 in the morning, she is *already* 14.
It's already done.

{2009 ~ 7 years old}

{2010 ~ 8 years old}


 {2011 ~ 9 years old}
{2012 ~ 10 years old}

{2013 ~ 11 years old}
 {2014 ~ 12 years old}

 {2015 ~ 13 years old}

Miss Sierra, it truly seems like a minute ago that you were my little girl ~ losing your first tooth, learning how to ride a bike.

And now, here we are, two blinks later, and you are about to start high school, taller than your mama!
It seems I am constantly caught between sadness that you are growing older, and complete joy: marveling at the young woman you have become, enjoying the time we have together, excited for your future.

You are:

Strong and determined ~ you know exactly what you want, and often how to go about getting it.

Organized and detailed ~ you will run a mighty tight ship one day! You expect a lot of others, but I suspect it's because you expect a lot of yourself.  You have a love of all things organizational.  Pretty bins, storage containers, papers, and pens. 
Everything has its place, and there's a place for everything.
Your favorite tool is your checklist.

Poised and mature ~ You've always seemed beyond your years. You are a born leader, and your sisters look up to you.

Thoughtful and giving ~ You love giving gifts ~ Picking out treasures for others.  And you are the first to get your Thank You notes done!

You love:

Summer days spent by the creek.
Reading a good book.
Taking care of animals.
Dinner out.
Hunting with Daddy.
Crafting with Mama.
Time in the kitchen.
Dreaming of vacation.


We are so very proud of the young lady you are becoming.
Happy Birthday, Darlin'!
We love you to the moon!
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Wednesday, August 10, 2016

More Summer Fun . . . At the Beach!

 A couple of weeks ago, we kidnapped my mother-in-law, and all escaped to the beach for the night.

The beach is my happy place.
I love it.
When I'm feeling sad,
When I'm feeling lost,
When I'm confused,
When I'm hurting:
I long for a trip to the sand and sea for peace.

We walked long walks,


We rode fun rides.
{When I say "we", I don't mean me.  That does *not* constitute "fun" in my mind.  That looks like a nauseous mess waiting to happen.  BUT ~ it's obviously fun to some!}


Gram and Kam ♥
The girls found the carousel.  A favorite tradition!
And while the others were on the carousel, Sierra found a space for lease, and was dreaming of opening her bakery there :)

Then we hit the sand to collect seashells,

and watch seagulls.

Tay even found another walking stick.
Remember our last beach trip, and her walking stick??

And the obligatory group photos ♥
 Hopefully the girls and I can make another trip soon.  We miss it already! 
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Camping Re-Cap

So. Summer is almost over, and from the looks of the ol' blog it seems as though we've done a big, fat nothing.
Not true.
We've actually been cramming in as much family fun time as humanly possible.
Which leaves very little time for documenting it, funny enough!
Last month, we made it to my family reunion camp-out!
I wasn't sure we would this year, with everything going on. 
We haven't missed a year in the 14 years we've been married ~ but we also hadn't suffered our second loss in four years before.
Life is so different now, it's almost unrecognizable.
I'm going to leave you with picutres.
It's my favorite way to tell a story, ya know:

There was plenty of bike-ridin.

There was some bug-catchin'.  Let me just tell you ~ these bugs that the boys catch for fishing are the biggest, ugliest suckers you can imagine! Ew!  But the fish love them!


There was a LOT of cousin bonding time.


Prizes were won,


Tournaments were played,

Snuggles were given.
 And at the end of the weekend, we wound up with another family photo for the books, and many, many, wonderful memories made.
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