Monday, January 13, 2014


He's gone and done it again.... turned another year older!  How is it possible that this little guy...

turned into this seven-year-old guy?

His "big present" has yet to arrive (thank you, polar vortex of doom), but he was pretty happy to open a few little gifts today with the big one (a real live, shoot 'em dead crossbow--I ain't raising no city boy, here) to come any day now.

Love this kid.  To. Pieces.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Polar Vortex

I enjoy when my kids are out of school.  Like last summer.  When we tackled our list of 100 summer bucket items.  Great times.  I remember them fondly.

But, there's something about my kids being out of school and being stuck in the house for five solid days that has me pulling out my hair.  In fact, that seems like more fun right now.  As does poking out my eyeball with a fork.  The pinterest worthy mom showed up for day one with games, loads of baking, and creative indoor solutions.  On day five of being snowed in, it's a mad house.  Like Lord of the Flies.  Only worse.

Want to watch TV for 12 hours?  Sounds good.  Play video games until your brain oozes out?  Why not?  Want to eat frosting out of the tub for breakfast?  Good plan.

I have never more needed to go to Target or get my oil changed or, heck, visit the obgyn.  Really, anything seems like a better option...

Views of the peaceful outdoors:

View of the not-so-peaceful indoors (forgive my half painted walls and messy kitchen and radiators without covers):

I should tell you that I am thankful that we have heat, that our pipes haven't burst, and that we have a fully stocked fridge or three.  And I am.  But, I'm begging for some warmer weather... or heck, for school to start back up--whichever comes first.

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Catch up...

This is what's happening today.  It's all that's happening.  This view, out to our front yard, is just the start of the largest snowstorm of the season (or seasons, really), which would be fine... except that the coldest front in over 20 years is coming too, and it's just a matter of time before our power goes out (thanks to being at the end of a country line), and we'll be looking for shelter.  Don't be surprised, indy friends, if we end up knocking at your door!


Just a few pics from Christmas, while I still remember, for the sake of posterity only... well, and a cute one of Trent.

Christmas morning tradition: opening stockings in Mommy and Daddy's bed...

Grace enjoying her new Kindle Fire....  

My favorite gift I gave: sitting unopened on the floor amid toy unwrappings.  Seriously, if you have a son, this is the book of childhood...

Trent... who loved, loved, loved opening presents

Grace's gift from Santa: some kind of messy craft thing Mommy will have to scrape off her new countertops!

Watching the shrinky dinks shrink... still fun even decades later!

Friday, January 03, 2014

Year in Review

2014.  How did that happen?

I worked a lot this year.  I worked on our house.  I worked on our field.  I worked at work.  It was a good year for work.

It was also a good year for the kids.  I don't want to slight Grace or Trent in any way, but I think that perhaps Grant has changed the most this past year.  All semblance of "little boy" is pretty well gone now.  When he hits, he HITS.  When he runs, he RUNS.  When he jokes, he sounds like an idiot.  But isn't that how it works for a 7 year old?

This year will be another big one for us.  With any luck, we will finish out the house renovations (are they ever truly done?), Trent will become a real walking, talking human, and Grace will enter first grade.

But what of Erin and me?  I'm continually reminded that I married the right person, and I will continue to try and convince Erin that she did the same, often through her tears and uncharacteristic swearing.  We're a good match.

I will refrain from making any resolutions, because who are we kidding?  You either make the choice to work harder at something, or you choose stasis.  If I want to be healthier, I'll work harder at it.  If I want to be a better manager at work, I'll work harder at it.  If I want to be a better father and husband, I'll spend more money next Christmas.  But I don't think these are really "resolutions."  Just choices.

All in all, life is as it should be.  Perhaps I've finally found the "normal."  Perhaps I'm finally settling into the life that God set out before me, realizing that I've been given more than 99% of the people in the world have been given.  And maybe that's all I really need to focus on in 2014.  Anyone would be lucky to have my wife, kids, church, job and home.  So I remain thankful, and I wish you all the best in 2014 as well.