But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD's love is with those who fear him and his righteousness with their children's children . . . Psalm 103:17

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Four silly boys

As the kids would say, "Daddies are boys too!"




Will's turn (minus the beard, but plus a mini tree)
Santa Seth




Christmas Day 2016

(I'm doing multiple blog posts in one morning because I have a great Internet connection and time, two truly rare and treasured commodities!)

Stockings!

Marcie thrilled with her socks and new nightgown from Aunt Mickey

With Aunt Natalie and Uncle James on Christmas morning. They made us delicious pancakes with special toppings!

Seth with his new LEGO watch from Grandpadad in Texas
Gracie showing off her watch

David trying to set his watch like a man ;) He would look at it throughout the day and say things like, "Oh, it's already 2 o'clock!" (it wasn't) or "It's time to eat!" (it was).

The most popular gifts of the day were the animal tails Aunt Natalie made the kids: David has the panther tail, Seth has "The Big Bad Wolf" (as they call it) tail, Will has a kangaroo tail, Gracie has a dog tail, and Marcie has the cat tail. 

Marcie being a kitty with her new tail


Isaac came up with the brilliant idea to line up five chairs and give the kids presents only when they were patient and seated. That way we could control the order and timing of an otherwise chaotic event! It worked super well.

I ordered the boys superhero capes and masks. They love them!

Seth as Captain America, David as Batman, Will as Superman (with a Big Bad Wolf tail accoutrement)
Marcie as Spiderman :)
David was excited that his LEGO watch was black and yellow just like his Batman costume, so he had me take a picture.

Seth's police car from Mickey and fireman helmet from Grandpadad
(In this photo he looks so much like me and my brother did!)
One of the two cutest little girls in the world!: Gracie feeding her new baby from Aunt Mickey. She brings me her baby to kiss when it has been accidentally dropped or "hurt" by one of the other quints.

A super-blurry and very rare photo of us reading to the kids at bedtime. Isaac took the photo.Will still has the Big Bad Wolf tail, and Seth is a panther. It was a wonderful Christmas! We are GREATLY blessed. 




Our most recent attempt at a family vacation (November)

Vacationing with toddler/young quints is no vacation for the adults involved. Maybe that's true for any family with small children; I suspect it is! It's fun for us to see them enjoy new places, and we like going somewhere different and being able to focus on just being a family without all the other responsibilities and distractions of work and home. So we took the kids to Orobiga, an Evangelical Brotherhood Church (Swiss Mission) camp outside the city of Goroka. The grounds and scenery are BEAUTIFUL!! More importantly, they have a pool with a locking gate. :)

Left to right: Marcie, David, Will, Seth, Gracie


Isaac and David checking out a treehouse


The boys (minus Isaac)

The world's smallest kiddie pool? Gracie still loved it!

Gavin with Will, Marcie and Gracie. Mom did NOT go into this pool! It's at 5,000 ft altitude, and it's TOO COLD!


We're thankful for Octonauts and Dora when we need a break from the pool. The girls stand at the ready, though, with their inflatable tubes!

David with a mix of chocolate and sunscreen on his face. The New Tribes Mission Store outside Goroka had CHOCOLATE CHIPS, so that became the treat of the weekend!

Kitties and cuties

Friends of ours just had kittens. The kids were so insane about them, Gavin says it's hardened his resolve NOT to get a pet anytime soon! (Our old dog died a few months ago.) David and Seth:



David doing two of his favorite things: "helping" Daddy with the car and riding his buddy's scooter



My friend Esi made these yarn bags, known as "bilums," for the girls. She lives way back in the bush and walks four hours each way once a month to come visit us and trade garden produce for store-bought food such as rice and oil. Her son Matuvi  usually accompanies her. Our lives are so incredibly easy compared to theirs!

Big Bro Isaac's hobbies

Okay, so this is actually not a true hobby, but I had to include it: While using the power washer to remove the caked-on mud from Gavin's motorbike, the kids tempted Isaac to spray them as well. They thought it was such fun! (Note Marcie wearing a ballerina tutu - one of her favorite costumes.)

Isaac is into woodturning right now!


My Christmas gift was a gorgeous New Guinea Walnut candle pillar! (Wish my hand wasn't covering it in the photo.)

"Bonus" photo: Gavin made these AMAZING cutting boards out of three different woods, including ebony inlay, for his mom and me.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Lots of four-year-old love

These boys don't even look related, but they sure enjoy being best friends and brothers! Will and David spent two hours wrestling on Isaac's bean-bag chair yesterday, devising all kinds of games and laughing riotously. Seth was off with his daddy and the girls.



Despite how different they all are, they very much band together and look out for each other (sometimes too much so, being bossy towards each other or too defensive of each other with kids outside our family).




Karen had all the manger scene pieces in a straight line, but Marcie insisted they needed to crowd around Jesus, because "Everyone wants to see the Baby Jesus!"


Then Marcie introduced a small wooden pig into the crowd around baby Jesus. We haven't taught her about Jewish dietary laws and "unclean" animals. :)
Marcie is very possessive of her family, always referring to us as "my daddy," "my mommy," "my three boys," etc. She is very sensitive to anyone being left out or left behind. (They all are sensitive that way, actually.) She likes to manage things in a motherly way, which of course comes across as bossy - especially when she tries to force her will on the others! She is a very passionate child with a sunny disposition if she's getting her way, and a strong aversion to correction if she's not. :)

David is our analytical rule-follower and self-appointed enforcer. He's the loving Alpha Male of the group. He's so responsible and aware, it's actually really great to have him looking out for the others and telling them what to do - and what NOT to do! He's amazingly trustworthy for a four-year-old. Of the quints, he's the most reticent with his affections (but loves DEEPLY). He's also the most verbal, our biggest question-asker, easily excited by presents and outings - complete with a little happy dance, rapid-fire giggle and enormous grin, and just an intensely interesting little person. He seems older than his years.
David rolling in the grass
 Seth is the class clown of the group. He is SO silly and funny with his antics, and he very much enjoys watching his siblings do silly/funny things too. He's quick to laugh and very quick to make his brothers and sisters laugh with him. He's very sensitive, which means his feelings are hurt easily. He's thankfully also very sweet and happy the vast majority of the time. He's the most physically affectionate of the quints, wanting to be held throughout the day and particularly at bedtime. His grin has one pronounced dimple in his right cheek - so winsome!
David and Seth being "bridges" over a small ditch.
 Silly, cute sisters:


Gracie is the definitive "winsome" child. She skips and sings through life, chuckling with a darling belly-laugh, is quick to run and give hugs when greeting people, and is very eager to learn and do new things. She is our most independent child. She dislikes being helped unless it's absolutely necessary, e.g. with her clothes. She's currently in a very bossy phase, standing up for herself, her things, and her personal space in a loud, demanding voice. She is very affronted if someone tries to mess with a sibling, too! Thankfully, overall she's a sensitive pleaser, almost perpetually happy.
This reminds me of the sister act in the old movie White Christmas


Will has such a sweet heart! His feelings are easily hurt, but he's the quickest to forgive and move on. He frequently doesn't even make it over to us for comfort if a sibling hurts him, he's so quick to want to jump back into the game! He's physically the biggest, but David has the strongest force of will and can easily lord it over Will. Will is PASSIONATE about food and TV shows. If he's hungry, life isn't worth living as far as he's concerned. I feel like I'm feeling him all day long! And he's the most keen on watching Bubble Guppies, Paw Patrol, or Octonauts (the current quint favorites). He's also our biggest loner, obviously needing some downtime by himself. He'll disappear to somewhere quiet and play or draw for sometimes an hour at a time. He's also crazy about his brothers and sisters and upset if he thinks anyone is being left out: "Mom! We forgot ______! We need to go get him/her!" He's the most protective of the quints.
Sweet Will

The kids really enjoy group hugs. They find them hilarious! (Seth and David were too busy being bridges to participate in the hug.)




Gavin, Carrie, Isaac, Will, David, Marcie, Seth, & Grace Jones

Gavin, Carrie, Isaac, Will, David, Marcie, Seth, & Grace Jones

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