Friday, August 5, 2022

Joy Dare::July

9276. Dessert and walking around The Vault with Mom
9277. Listening to them tell Grandma all the camp stories
9278. Supper and shopping with Anna
9279. Haircuts

9280. Friends over for supper
9281. Lemon blueberry cake
9282. I didn't feel worse this morning
9283. The youth sharing about camp
9284. Giving Isaiah my attention this evening
9285. Holiday work day
9286. Cookout kind of supper
9287. Jeremy and I worked together and got the stairwell painting finished
9288. Isaiah practicing self-control
9289. Reading time
9290. Anna's sweet birthday card and gift
9291. Texts, notes and flowers
9292. Wedding is good for the soul
9293. Anna and Renee making a video
9294. Aliza spending the afternoon with Lydia
9295. Planning for the school year
9296. Isaiah whisper singing bedtime songs because my throat was sore
9297. Making apple pies
9298. The sound of summer rain on leaves
9299. Jeremy is so patient and kind
9300. Immune systems that are strong
9301. Safely home
9302. The technology to watch church when I'm home with kids with colds
9303. Aliza and Josiah had so much fun

9304. Ice cream with Anna and Isaiah
9305. Jeremy got to have a fun day
9306. Talking with another homeschool mom
9307. My girls could make supper so I could have friend time
9308. Summer storm
9309. Lunch with Anna and Isaiah
9310. Cleaned up the laundry room
9311. Successful project with Mom's help
9312. Anniversary date night
9313. Corn hole on the porch after dark
9314. Isaiah had a good attitude
9315. Quiet evening together
9316. A Saturday with no plans
9317. Hanging out with Jeremy to help him
9318. Listening to Aliza's thought on the way to camp
9319. Making it possible for Aliza to do all the things this summer
9320. "Mom, thanks for everything you did while I was sick." Isaiah
9321. Supper that Jeremy enjoyed
9322. An evening walk
9323. The "I'm having fun" text from Aliza
9324. When Josiah has things to talk about
9325. Playing games with Isaiah
9326. Hugging my Aliza girl
9327. The excuse to call Karen every day
9328. Finishing the Hebrews Bible study
9329. Hearing Aliza tell me about her friend accepting Jesus
9330. This season of having big kids and little kids
9331. Isaiah curled up beside me and fell asleep
9332. Drenching summer rain
9333. The first dahlia bloom
9334. Watching home videos with Anna (that she made years ago) and laughing until we cry
9335. Picking up porch chairs
9336. Aliza shining on the stage
9337. Hugging my girl and bringing her home
9338. Sunday rest
9339. Checking on Aliza while she sleeps
9340. Aliza's playlist for painting the dining room
9341. This crew

9342. Wind off the water
9343. Learning all about Agron from a young man's vast knowledge
9344. Seeing Anna in pointe shoes for the first time
9345. Alla of Anna's excited, grateful hugs
9346. Finished dining room
9347. Key lime pie for Mom
9348. Reading about sharks with Isaiah
9349. Taylor coming over to hang out
9350. Family car time
9351. Mountain fresh air
9352. Watching everyone have so much fun kayaking
9353. Talking around the fire
9354. Snuggled in with Anna and Aliza
9355. A place that brings out the best in our family
9356. A second night around the fire
9357. Special pictures and stories
9358. Song service for church
9359. Very smooth trip home
9360. Seeing the BLUE confetti


Thursday, August 4, 2022

A Refreshing Weekend

 Whether it's the setting or the people or a combination of both, this weekend brings out the best in my family. We have been going to Trout Run, PA to visit my aunt and uncle for 5 years now and it is the most looked forward to trip by all of the children. The weather was perfectly warm during the day and cool at night. The water was mountain cold, but that did not stop the children and Jeremy from swimming. I opted not to get wet above my knees which made Anna very sad.

The kayaks were in constant use for two afternoons.


Josiah declared this fishing kayak his "dream kayak".  I don't think anyone else had a turn in that one.

In the morning we walked on the mostly dry riverbed in another area.

Aliza climbed the landslide and mostly slide down.
The others caught minnows and looked for crawdads.

There was also lots of trampoline jumping, scavenger hunting, and yard game playing. 

Dan laid out his artistic photos from Kenya in the evening. I had never seen them or heard the stories behind the pictures. At one point all the children were around a picture that Dan was telling them about. Aliza asked questions which I know is so fun for someone who has stories to tell that are different from most people's experiences. It turned out to be a special time that I will treasure.

This week Isaiah has continued to lobby for us to go every 6 months instead of just once of year!

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Dining Room

 This dining room has had many evolutions. When Jeremy and I first got married, it was an extra space with a table cloth and candles on the table. We had a table in the kitchen that we used for eating. As our family grew, we got a table from Jeremy's parents and it became the table where we ate, held Bible studies, and did school and crafts. Then when it was time for construction, the dining room served as our kitchen for 3 months.

And we were all very happy when the table stretched out again and we had our first meal in the dining room again.
Now it was finally the dining room's turn for renovation. I'm still amazed at what a difference it has made to remove the floor heaters.

And then paint, new light fixture and curtains and it feels like a whole new room and matches the rest of the house. The school cabinet fits back in the corner without the heaters taking a few inches on each side.

That is 6 rooms finished and ONE more to go!

Saturday, July 16, 2022

Upstairs Bathroom and Hallway

 With the upstairs bathroom and hallway painted, the entire upstairs has been painted! We updated the bathroom with some new paint, shelves and shower curtain.

The hallway and stairwell was a little bit trickier to paint. Paint was peeling in the hallway around the light.

Jeremy had to paint the top of the stairwell. That height was beyond my comfort zone.

Now it's fresh and clean...

...with new light fixtures.
I wanted to do something to clean up the back of the steps.
I decided to try stair riser decals. Mom was up for the project. We figured out a system and they went on pretty smoothly. I chose a simple shiplap type pattern since, as with everything in our house, the steps are not necessarily square. I'm happy with how it turned out. Clean and fresh--it's what makes me happy right now!
That makes 5 areas finished and leaves 2 more to do! I still cannot believe that every single area seems to take four times as long as it should to finish.

Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Joy Dare::June

 9182. Iced chai and catching up with Elizabeth
9183. Isaiah's room clean and set up
9184. The kids had fun at the beach
9185. Working outside
9186. Isaiah slept in his bed all night
9187. Talked Karen's ear off
9188. Josiah took an opportunity without hesitation
9189. Tadpoles in the mud puddle and Isaiah is so excited
9190. Some time at my mom's house
9191. Josiah came home SO happy
9192. KLOVE fan awards
9193. Tea to celebrate Mom's retirement
9194. Josiah working with his Dad

9195. Beautiful evening to be outside
9196. Pokemon connection with another family
9197. Choir concert was beautiful
9198. Josiah took a really big risk
9199. Aliza's reaction to Josiah deciding to go to camp
9200. Everyone pitched in to clean
9201. Listening
9202. Anna was my tea party prep partner
9203. Comfortably hosting in my home
9204. Mom's help
9205. Catching fireflies with Isaiah
9206. Fans on the porch
9207. A day to go slow and catch my breath
9208. Taking the heavy job
9209. Meeting some new people
9210. Some time alone
9211. Energy for the day
9212. Talking to people about homeschool
9213. A friend I haven't seen in a long time
9214. Better rest
9215. The feeling of finishing a job well
9216. Hanging out with one of my kids' favorite teachers
9217. Coming home to my family
9218. Listening to missionary stories
9219. Supper with Jeremy
9220. More customers than I was expecting
9221. Maria.
9222. Grocery shopping with Aliza
9223. Sitting on the porch to watch the storm roll in
9224. Anna figured it out on her own and was so proud
9225. A quiet afternoon so that Isaiah could snuggle close to me for house
9226. Rain made finishing the front flowerbed easier
9227. Home alllll day
9228. Delving into the next painting project
9229. Absorbed in a book--Waymaker
9230. Starting the day with Starbucks and a friend
9231. A one day painting project
9232. Aliza and Josiah had a fun night
9233. A really pretty beach day
9234. The summer to reconnect with cousins
9235. Josiah came home with a meaningful gift
9236. Another evening that was just right to be outside
9237. Helping Josiah pack
9238. Aliza is so confident and excited
9239. Getting the group picture with Josiah smiling
9240. Talking a walk with Isaiah
9241. Hugging my Dad on Father's Day
9242. A handful of fireflies
9243. Buying some extra snacks for Anna and Isaiah
9244. Camp Mama Melinda
9245. Chai with my mom on the porch
9246. S'mores
9247. The kind of texts that make a mom cry with gratitude and pride
9248. Anna and Isaiah chose their lunch
9249. Crossing off the morning's to do list
9250. Clean sheets
9251. Really resting today
9252. Friends playing together
9253. Evening walk
9254. Isaiah helping in the rain

9255. So proud of Josiah
9256. All of my children home
9257. Hearing all the stories
9258. Aunts, uncles, cousins
9259. Good attitudes
9260. Cooper wanted to sit at our table

9261. Hanging out in the children's worship class
9262. Sunday afternoon Mom calls
9263. Children that want to go to church
9264. Getting back to normal
9265. Marvel movie evenings
9266. A loud house full of teenagers and almost teenagers
9267. Anna getting to see a friend who lives far away
9268. Summer snacks


9269. Home movies that make me laugh
9270. Friends that love my kids
9271. When I win the Mom battle and the child is happy that I did
9272. Breeze on a hot morning
9273. Talking to a neighbor
9274. Jeremy feeling good enough to install the new upstairs hall lights
9275. Listening to Aliza and Josiah having their own conversation in the car

Monday, July 4, 2022

King Family Day

Aliza and Josiah didn't get a morning to sleep in after coming home from camp. Saturday morning we headed to Cherry Crest Adventure Farm to spend the afternoon with some of my Mom's family. Josiah got a cold as soon as he got home or got home with a cold started--not sure which way that happened. Aliza was very tired. 

This was small portion of Mom's family. Quite a few of the ones that live in the PA/MD area though. One aunt and one cousin came from Michigan. It was fun to get to see and visit with them.

Cherry Crest had a lot of farm type activities to do. The big slides were a lot of fun.

Josiah and Isaiah particularly enjoyed this (below). From breaking bricks on our front steps,My Josiah knew how to use the force of momentum correctly. Isaiah could hit the bell over and over on the smaller one which he thought was really fun.

We had supper together before we drove home. My cousin's little guy, Cooper, wanted to sit at our table. He is five years old. He got lots of attention! My heart was pretty much completely melted.


My family showed up as quite the motley crew. Jeremy woke up not feeling great that morning too. I told Aliza and Josiah how proud of them I was because they all had good attitudes in spite of tiredness and not feeling great. And I told Anna how proud I was of her for reaching out and including her 2nd cousins in the girls group with her. 

We skipped Sunday School that Sunday, but when you have kiddos that want to be at church, you get up and go to church no matter what!

Monday, June 27, 2022

Camp Week

 There were so many emotions going into camp week. Aliza was SO excited. She could hardly wait for the day to come when she could finally go. Josiah decided at the last minute to go and was so nervous about being away from home for 5 nights. There were lots of tears and my heart walked away from me when we said good bye. Anna was irritable because she would have loved to go and some of her friends were going but she has one more year to wait. And Isaiah was so sad for Josiah to be leaving because he "would have no one to play with." He had a night of the saddest crying over Josiah leaving. With all of that, I was sortof relieved that the day finally arrived and the countdown to them coming home could begin.


It was such a great group of kids and leaders. I had no hesitation in sending Josiah for the first time with the adults that would be around him. Ultimately, Monday morning I got a message that he was really debating coming home. He struggled that morning but camp Mom Melinda had a heart to heart with him and he decided that he would focus on what God had for him at camp. By Tuesday he had turned the corner and never looked back. Josiah and Aliza had such a great time. They came home happy and had lots of stories to tell.

Meanwhile at home, Isaiah had made an agenda of something special to do every day. Day 1 was "go to the store and buy candy." He and Anna greatly enjoyed going grocery shopping with me and picking out some candy and snacks for the week.

I got a picture of a very happy Josiah and my week got a lot better!

On Day 2 we went to Lowe's. Isaiah had my camera and I found a gem.
Isaiah caught a handful of fireflies...
...and "chillaxed" on the porch while I did some BJU work. The weather was so lovely last week. I was loving the porch!
Day 2 on the list was making s'mores.

Day 3 was buying lunch in a way I have never agreed to! Isaiah wanted McDonald's and a CookOut shake. Anna was Subway and Tropical Smoothie. I decided to say YES and they thought it was amazing that I would go to 4 different drive throughs for lunch.

Day 4 was for having friends over and playing.

Josiah is usually the one who takes the trash out and takes the can to and from the road. Isaiah was very willing to fill in for Josiah. It was raining hard so he grabbed the golf umbrella and headed out. The umbrella and the trash can are as big as he his. His head is staying dry but he didn't put shoes on.

I was definitely the Mom who was waiting outside the car for the kids to pull in to the church parking lot. As much as I was ready to hug my kiddos, I was also feeling extremely grateful for the experience they had and the adults who were with them to speak into their lives and encourage them to grow closer to God and to grow up into healthy adults.