Monday, February 29, 2016


Our family had fun on Saturday bowling with a group from our church.  

It was fun to have all the kids on a lane with bumpers and the ramp.  The adults had a chance for a bit on conversation and a lane to ourselves.  Of course there was lots of cheering and high fives.

A fun family outing from our home on the gravelly road.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Book Review: The Gift of Friendship

When I first picked up the book The Gift of Friendship: Stories That Celebrate the Beauty of Shared Moments (edited by Dawn Camp), I was impressed by the list of contributors (Lisa-Jo Baker, Holley Gerth, Liz Curtis Higgs, Jennifer Dukes Lee, Renee Swope, Lysa Terkeurst and the list goes on) but wondered if it would have more fluff than heart and meat.  Yet when I started reading it, I could not put it down.

This book celebrates the beauty of friendships of many types, encourages you to remember the blessing of those friends God has placed in your life (even if only for a season) and gives you courage to reach out to others if in need of a friend or to be that friend someone else needs.  Even though each story is from a different woman reflecting on her own friendships and experiences, there is so much in the book that you can relate to and draw parallels to your own life.  It helped me to reflect on the friendships that I treasure, those that maybe I need reconnect with, and consider the importance of the small (and large) investments that keep a friendship healthy.  Sometimes just a text to encourage or an invitation to coffee is all it takes to bless a friend that has blessed you.  The book also celebrates those friendships that are just for a season, recognizing the importance of those God has placed in our path for a season and the impact those connections can make as well, something I don't often reflect on.

I appreciated that each entry in the book is heartfelt yet short, making it a great book to read just a story at a time while sitting in a waiting room or waiting for kids to get done with an activity or for when I had just 5-10 minutes of time that I wanted to fill with positive encouragement instead of scrolling through social media.  (Though I ended up reading this book much quicker than that as I was hooked by the stories and needed to finish it to get this post completed).

This book would be a great way to bless a friend (or two or three) in your life as a way to let them know their friendship blesses you.  I'm already trying to decide who to pass my copy to :)

* I was given a free copy of the book in exchange for a review.  All opinions and words are my own.

Monday, February 22, 2016

New Four-legged Family member

We'd been missing our dog and talking about getting a new one for a while, but our usual answer was that we were waiting until spring to make house training a bit easier... well apparently the warm snap this past weekend was just spring-like enough to push us over the edge.

A fur-ball of energy joined our family --  a 7 month old Chihuahua mix name ChloeAnn.  We are still working on a good nickname, but for now she is just "Chloe" or "Chloe-girl".

She is playful, high energy, and loves to fetch and jump.  She still has a lot of manners to learn but she is a smart and funny dog who does really well with our kiddos which is huge.  She reminds us a lot of our first dog, before kids, who also was a female Chihuahua mix.

She is fitting in well, though the kids have quickly found out that she claims any small toy on the floor as her own so they've been keeping their bedroom doors shut and forbidding her from coming in (avoiding the "can the puppy sleep with me?" conversation).  Of course I think the puppy would be great reason to keep their rooms clean but they just don't see my logic.

So I'm sure you'll see many more puppy photos but wanted to introduce the newest resident on the gravelly road.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Our Little Valentines

The blog has been quiet for a while and I intend to go back and catch up a bit soon but until then...

On Sunday morning (Valentine's Day) hubby was still out of town and miraculously the kids and I were ready for church a bit early so I convinced them to take some pics (read I bribed them with tic tacs).  Of course they decided the new sunglasses they got in their little Valentine's gift were absolutely required and most of the pics were on the goofy side but we certainly had fun.

The boys as "serious spies"...

And sometimes its the silly shots that turn out the best :)

Trying to get in front of the camera and in the pictures a bit more here on the gravelly road.

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