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

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Will and David doing cute things

 Sorry, my brain can't come up with a better post title than that. :}

David always stands with his hands like this while watching TV. It's so cute and grown-up looking!


Touring the stadium where the Cowboys play. David and Will really enjoyed running on the field.


David LOVES Thomas Train stuff now! I knew he would based on how much he loves the Baby Einstein Things that Go video and how often he says "Toot! Toot!" SO cute!


I find it very amusing that this was the way he chose to play with the trains. He wasn't trying to keep them from his siblings; they were all outside. I also find it amazing that he already knows how to hook them up in proper order, with the engine first followed by two freight cars. He was pushing one train around by holding onto the back car only and he had to keep adjusting the trajectory of the engine as it tried to veer away from his intended path. It just seems too "little-boy-ish" for a toddler who isn't quite 18 months adjusted age yet (which is how the kids are assessed developmentally).


Slide pictures from last week

Marcie (front) and Gracie really love each other. That's Seth down below.

Mr. Seth

And again, Seth

Beautiful Gracie

Handsome Will (each of my boys is equally gorgeous, I think, but in completely different ways)

Darling David. Sorry, this was the best picture we got. CONSTANT motion, this kid!

Look how Will is just about sitting on David since David pushed his way up too fast! Yes, we monitor them on the slide. 

Seth's turn on top, with Marcie raring to go behind him

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Choosing the better thing

Luke 10:38-42
New International Version (NIV)
38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
41 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, 42 but few things are needed—or indeed only one.[a] Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

My alternate title for this blog post was "I am a failure." Every single day I fail to keep the house as clean as I want it to be. Every day I fail to clean up after myself in the kitchen because I'm rushing around so fast with impatient babies, then I forget to go back and do it later because I am the world's most distractible person, it seems! I fail to cook or bake or do much at all in the kitchen - that's gonna change in PNG out of sheer necessity! Every day I fail to keep my kids as clean as I would like them to be. I fail to catch every fall, I fail to prevent every bite, I fail to see what happened when in the aftermath someone is left crying. I fail to make my bed. I fail to clean my smelly shower. I fail to keep toddlers out of the toilets, for crying out loud! I fail to organize just about everything. (Real problem area for me, organization. I'd much rather clean my bathroom.) I run out of "me" before I run out of duties and daylight. I get so frustrated that even with a fabulous nap under my belt, I STILL can hardly function after 9 at night when I really need to start the big bag of mending and spend time with my husband and start sorting all my papers and keepsakes from the quints' first two years so we can actually pack up the last items and move back overseas. . . phew!

So my challenge, brought to mind last night by a beautiful devotional based on the life of a darling girl I knew named Bethany Wake, is to "choose the better thing." I can't do it all. It's not humanly possible, at least not for this human. 

What is the better thing? Well, the ultimate better thing is to glorify God by enjoying Him forever. That includes carving out moments to be in His Word, to actually PRAY more than a sentence at a time, and to remember to turn to Him when Will is so cranky I feel like I can't take it another moment. [Will, if you are reading this in future years, you were only cranky because you had a fever and weren't feeling well. I was cranky too. I love you!!]

The better thing, though, also includes my time with my kids. Will I ever wish I had kept a cleaner house? That my shower hadn't smelled so weird? No way! I'm not even going to remember the shower - unless I read this, ha, ha! Will I wish I had kept my kids looking perfect and immaculately clean? Doubt it. Besides, as missionary kids, it's NOT going to happen! When we chose to be missionaries we embraced the mud and dust, so to speak. Plus, it's how Gavin and I grew up on the mission field. The dirt of a happy, active childhood is what nighttime baths are for. Or, in Isaac's case as a toddler, nap time and nighttime baths!

Choosing the better thing means I sit on the floor with my kids rather than sweep it around them. It means I laugh when they make a mess because I forgot to put some bag of Cheerios out of reach. It means I choose to go outside with them rather than clean up the inside. It means I sit and hold them at bedtime when they watch their last wind-down baby TV show, or read them books that they bring to me. It means I spend time reading to Isaac and doing devotions with him when all the other babies are in bed. It means I work the lunchroom at his school because that means so much to him. I need to be reminded to "choose the better thing" because these precious moments with our unique and beautiful kids are better things I will NEVER regret.

Choosing the better thing sometimes also includes getting away from the demands and pressure of a house with five one-and-a-half-year-olds so that I can return recharged and refreshed with a good sense of humor! It gives the kids a chance to play with other adults who LOVE them like family - what a blessing!!!! We will miss you all so much!

So never mind that right now my bed isn't made, that I'm still in my pajamas, and that my shower still needs a good scrubbing. Oh, and I haven't touched the drawers of papers and boxes of mementos yet! Each baby is happily asleep for their morning nap. I know I hugged and spent time reading to or playing with each one, and I comforted those who were hurt either physically or emotionally.
Thanks to God's grace in leading me to the above Bible passage and Bethany's devotional, at least this morning I chose the better thing.

Love,
Carrie
Seth: Is football in his future like his Grandpadad? Grow, buddy, grow!

Marcie commandeering the hose nozzle

Gracie is queen of the pool.

Seth's turn to play with the water

Marcie looking on

Brotherly teamwork in managing the hose!
Will is behind David, but he's also got two hands on it.

Everything is a group effort

Where there is water there will be mud.

Doesn't Will look like a caricature of Charlie Chaplin? All he needs is the hat!

This is a funny picture because Seth had brought me the book and was sitting on my lap, but David wanted to get in on the action so he managed to squeeze himself between us.

Happy brothers: David and Will (who is feeling better and very happy this morning, thank God!)

Love,
Carrie

Monday, April 28, 2014

Thanks for the fun visit, Uncle Chuck and cousin Charles!

In case you can't guess from the similarities, Uncle Chuck is my dad's brother and has always been a super fun uncle to me! I was SO thrilled he and my cousin Charles came to meet the babies! We had a FUN time!







Sunday, April 27, 2014

Gracie, Seth and Chick-fil-a

This reminds me of one of my favorite Eloise Wilkin's books,
Where Did the Baby Go?


A giant lemonade from Chick-fil-a is a serious responsibility, requiring Gracie's full attention.


Seth and Mommy. We're going to miss Chick-fil-a in PNG!


Saturday, April 26, 2014

A few more bluebonnet photos

These were on my dad's phone:

I just love this one of my very happy parents with Seth!

Seth was definitely the most content one to just be in the flowers and pose.

Marcie and Mom

Happy exploring Will (we were on Spur 408 and Grady Niblo, for you Dallas-ites)

Up a tree

With LOTS of adult supervision - one adult per child with a couple others standing by. :)

The girls were in there too but I don't have the pictures to prove it. They are on the Rosses' cell phones.

It was so cute, though: Once my brother put Seth up on a branch the other boys HAD to follow, then the girls had to get in on it. They didn't want to get down! True MKs (missionary kids) already, right?!


Seth is very pleased with himself. That's Uncle Kenneth's hand holding his leg.


What kinds of things are we in store for over the years as the boys follow each other's lead in various risky, fun, crazy adventures?? And the girls might be right behind!

Gracie is all done!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Mic-Key button is OUT!

Upon picking Seth up out of his crib today I noticed his little feeding tube button lying on the mattress. His little hole into his tummy had already closed up quite a bit, so I knew there was no chance of reinserting it. If it's been out longer than four hours it has to be surgically replaced, which of course Seth wouldn't qualify for since he doesn't use it for food anymore. So we taped some gauze on it, per the doctor's orders, and it's closing up more all day long. 

The kids are getting more and more smart and deliberate in what they do, so we're having to decide what to do about (1) throwing food, (2) screaming (for fun - they make a mighty chorus!) (3) biting (as always), and (4) laughing disobedience - e.g., "Give that to Mommy," at which point they run away! Since they aren't quite yet 18 months old adjusted age, it's hard to know how much to react, distract, time-out, etc. . . please pray for wisdom for us! And for patience and diligence and peace. It's exhausting. But the kids are super fun most of the time and cute all the time!

Miss Lynn and the babies one Sunday afternoon. Marcie is climbing on the book. She hurls herself into every activity.
Aunt Judy and Aunt Jennifer with the babies: David, Marcie, Seth, Will and Grace
Marcie

Grandpadad and his girls (Marcie on left, Gracie on right)
They love wearing their harness backpacks with leashes
The nighttime routine with a happy Seth


Happy Will going down the slide on his tummy

Now it's Gracie's turn with David coming up behind

Darling Gracie.
a-boo!

Peek . . . 



Marcie is hiding a beautiful smile behind that pacifier!


David. It's hard to terrify people with your mighty axe when your pants keep falling down.



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

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

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