Monday, November 17, 2014

The First Snow Day!

Best friends and filled with giggles.

Evangeline was SO enamored with the idea of snow. 

Elijah feeling pretty chilly at this point despite the double layers he is wearing.  Hopefully I find his snow pants soon! 

I had so much fun making memories with the kiddos.

This was Evangeline's first time on a sled!  

The view from our kitchen window was simply breathtaking.  

I still cannot believe how much it snowed last night and this morning.  We received around 4" of snow.  Honestly a big part of me doubted that it really would snow as much as was predicted.  I have zero memories of it ever snowing in November (though I am sure that it has once or twice in my lifetime)!  It truly was magical to wake up this morning and see the beauty of fresh fallen snow. It really did feel like Christmas morning and I had to resist the urge to break out our Christmas tree.  We did break out the Christmas music while I whipped up some Raspberry Pancakes for breakfast.  The rest of our day we tried to squeeze in extra stories and snuggles while we enjoyed watching the snow fall.  Elijah and I did go sledding down the front hill which was SO much fun!  I am so thankful for a boy with such an adventurous spirit.  He even enjoyed the snow flying in his face as we went zipping down the hill!  We came inside and enjoyed hot chocolate which is a tradition that I have passed down to my own family.  I am hoping that one day this winter Elijah and I can go sledding on the same hills where I use to sled ride at my parent's farm.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

October Reads

I read these books in October. 
I am so thankful that I was able to carve out some time to read this month.  Even in a busy season of life reading is so worth it.  As Lloyd Alexander says, "Keep reading.  It's one of the most marvelous adventures that anyone can have."  

October Reads:
Look and Live: Behold the Soul-Thrilling, Sin-Destroying Glory of Christby Matt Papa:  This is my first experience with worship recording artist Matt Papa and I hope it will not be my last.  I am only about halfway through this book but oh my is it ever good.  Truly it is the glory of God that changes everything.  The answer to whatever is going on in our life is to look to the cross.  Do you desire to change?  Stop wrestling with that particular sin that you can't seem to conquer?  Papa writes, "When we look outside ourselves and see the kindness of God and what our sin did to Jesus, that begins to melt us.  That begins to change us."  This book has been so helpful especially as I am going through a difficult time in my own personal life.  It's one that you should read slowly as you allow Christ to work through the book to change you.  Please note that I did receive a review copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review.

Where Treetops Glisten by Tricia Goyer, Cara Putman, and Sarah Sundin: This book includes three novellas which all revolve around the same family during World War II.  It is the story of both courage and romance.  I enjoyed every story in this book.  I am amazed at how the authors were able to weave all of the stories together.  The fact that the books happened during Christmas made them even better!  Please note that I did receive a copy of this book from Blogging For Books.

These are the Generations by Eric Foley: This was one of those good yet challenging books to read.  Challenging because it really opened my eyes to what it is currently like to be a Christian in North Korea.  So often as Christians we like to think that the persecution we read about in the New Testament doesn't really happen anymore.  The reality is that there are so many Christians around the world who are experiencing extreme persecution for following Christ.  This book was a great reminder of God's faithfulness and the fact that He desires for all nations to come to know Him.

Eight Twenty Eight: When Love Didn't Give Up by Larissa & Ian Murphy: Not only does this book show what true love can look like but it shows what God's love looks like.  This has to be one of the sweetest and most beautiful love stories I have ever read.  I don't want to give anything away but would urge you to read this book!  If you are a local friend our library even has it.  ;)

Cooking with Chia For Dummies by Debbie Rogers: Although I enjoyed flipping through this book from the library I don't think I will be adding it our personal library anytime soon.  Chia seeds are incredibly healthy and worth adding to your diet.  I currently add them to smoothies and also make a dairy free pudding out of them.  A lot of the recipes in this book do include gluten which I am trying to reduce in my diet so I didn't find it this book as helpful as I had hoped.

What books did you read last month?  Any recommendations for your favorite holiday children's books?  

Thursday, November 6, 2014

October at Our Home

A fun hand print craft I did with the kids.  (It's supposed to be a tree with leaves.)  This one was Eva's which didn't turn out super great but it was really fun!  Eli also made one but gave his away already.  
October at our home has really been a crazy full month.  Our month started off with the Wool Fest (an annual tradition in our family) where we enjoy a festival that celebrates all things wool.  Honestly it seems so normal until I try to explain it to someone that doesn't live around here!  I think the happy hubby and I have been every year since we have been together.  We love walking around, enjoying the good food, buying scented soaps, and we ALWAYS purchase a Christmas ornament.  It really wouldn't be October without the Wool Festival.  We were also able to squeeze in a quick trip to visit family which is always such a treat!  

Walking everywhere! 
The majority of the month our sweet Evangeline was ill.  She battled croup, two ear infections, and a 9 day throw up virus!  Eva also turned one but we have yet to really celebrate.  We sang to her on her birthday but she didn't even smile once! Needless to say this mama is thrilled to finally have a healthy girl again.  Eva also learned to walk and is on the go, go, go!      

Elijah has really enjoyed climbing the apple tree (which didn't produce apples this year).  
 I think this October has to be one of the warmest that I can remember.  It usually frosts around the 10th of the month but this year I don't think it frosted until the very end of the month.  There were even a few days when we wore t-shirts because it was so warm!  The warm weather meant lots of time to play outside.  One of my favorite things about our home is the huge backyard we have to play in.  We actually live on about 7 acres and live next door to our church which has a wonderful playground.  Eli and I have a new tradition which he has named "the crazy push" which is where I push him as hard as high as I possibly can.  I run underneath the swing and yell at the same time as he goes soaring into the air.  I'm sure it is quite a sight to behold but it has been a sweet memory to make with my boy!
So thankful for swings to swing on every single day!
The weather is finally turning cold and I hear that it is going to snow next week.  Time to bring out the warm stews and soups!  Oh and see if there is any other way that I could possibly use pumpkin in a recipe!  We are looking forward to things settling down for us as we prepare for a simple holiday season.