Happy Birthday!

Skye Kristine is 1 year old today!


Skye is a happy, content little baby – a joy to have around!

Even though it seems she might be lost in the hubbub, being part of a big family is a bonus for this little one. The older kids love her and dote on her, gathering  around as I bring her out from a nap and competing for a smile. I love the look on her face as she basks in their attention.

Skye also knows how to speak up for herself and gain attention.

Due to the current rhythm of our family, I was able to spend time with just her in the early mornings before the others awoke. She developed like a classic baby, and I  got to watch and delight in each new skill in a way I haven’t done since my first born.


She loves to be outside and clearly doesn’t mind the dirt. She takes two good naps, refused the pacifier until 11 mo. and now wants it to go to sleep.  Like Flora, Skye has a very slight build which makes her easy to pick up and take along on all our adventures.


She loves to watch and is pretty quick to catch on and try out a new skill. She has 3 teeth, feeds herself quite well, likes fruit, beans and certain veggies. She knows a few signs and uses them along with sounds that are close to the word so I’m thinking she’ll talk soon.

A few quirks that make her unique:

She learned to crawl normally then somewhere along the way it morphed into the funny sit and scoot.


Unlike the other children, she dislikes eggs and bath time.


We just penned a goat outside her bedroom and every time she wakes up she points to the window and chuckles when I let her look out and say hi.

She also used a push toy to walk more than most of the others and got quite good at maneuvering around. She now walks on her own but still loves to push the baby doll stroller.


We all love this little one but she is growing up fast and is not a baby anymore!

Happy Birthday Skye; may the Lord bless you with a joyful heart that reaches out and touches others with His goodness and life.


Three couples made a rendezvous in the mysterious swamps of Caddo lake. Converging on a rustic hideaway house, they made plans to explore the remote regions of the swamp in search of wildlife, secret pathways and adventure!


Leader of the expedition (and the most good looking I might add).


Early the next morning the group set out by canoe (for added stealth and to test stamina), drifting through the mossy trees.


The journey was perilous – leaning too far, hitting a tree and one crew almost became alligator food! Quick thinking from the bowman and progress was restored.


Encountered brilliant wildlife on a dreary island of mud and discovered an ancient ritual of eating lunch while standing.


Nothing daunted, this crew was eager for more!



And more is what they got! Their destination lay just on the other side of a deceptively benign looking lake weed. Green tentacles pulled at the hulls, releasing their grip for a few moments as the paddlers hacked away, only to grab on again. But our explorers fought bravely and  inches of progress were won.


A hideout was discovered! Seemingly abandoned….probably due to the lake weed.






A quick exploration revealed that it was still being used by a hideous villain!


Back on open water, more duck blinds were discovered and explored – most, reassuringly deserted.



This fearless team pulled up inside one and took a respite from the sun…and from paddling. Don’t worry – 5 hours down, only four more to go before we reach home!

After a long day of pulling oars (or paddles) our heroes ate a hearty meal and turned in early.



The next morning found them back out on the water.


While weaving through dense trees in shallow water, a retirement plan was hatched by the senior crew member – making creches out of cypress knees. These seemed representative of another crew members family – Dad, Mom and all their children! Think it will sell?



Halfway around Horse island (though no horses were spotted) it began to rain. Over an hour from home port and out in the middle of nowhere, things seemed rather grim. Suddenly out of the grey appeared a covered boat dock, just large enough for two canoes and their passengers! An early lunch was enjoyed as they waited out the weather.


As the rain let up the crew packed up and made for home! Around Horse Island and through a densely treed inlet, navigating by a track phone GPS….which is fortunate, because instinct would have had them lost forever.




Land was found, a short portage across a strip of land separating the wilds from civilization and this cold, tired crew was home. Hot showers, warm drinks and dinner await!


A happy boy

Lance got an excitingly big box in the mail yesterday – a birthday present from his Nana!


Some assembly was required but easily done with many assistants.

I described how this could be used to sort his collections….


Didn’t know an 8 year old boy could be so excited about a set of drawers!


The oldest three got to stay up past bedtime to begin sorting through treasure.


This is something that needed to be done very badly. We called a halt after an hour but I expect Lance to be happily occupied through the next few days of rainy weather. Thanks Nana!

Flannelgraph meets Scripture Talk

Christmas brought about two new teaching tools which have combined beautifully as this video will show:


I came across the Scripture Talk video during a website sale and was surprised and impressed to realize it was made by a church we attended while in Dallas. I use this to start off school while I lay out the days work. Very handy!

Winter Doings

December has been a full, fun month. I’m currently making use of the time off school to catch up a few things and plan for next year…er, week!


Making snowflakes at Aunt Katie’s wedding shower.


Caroling and handing out goodies to Granny and her neighbors.


Making cookies for the cousin Christmas party!! Even Skye gets in on the action.

Another major project for me was the writing of our annual newsletter. Brian and I made it a tag-team effort this year and then the kids helped us pass it out along with cookies. Here is a link for those who are interested in reading about our year!


Hope you had a Merry Christmas and wishing you a happy New Year!!!


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