Monday, December 16, 2013


I guess I'd better mention Thanksgiving before Christmas gets here.  We went to NC on entirely too short of a visit.  Next time we go we've decided we've got to stay at least a week if Mom and Dad can put up with us for that long.

We jumped right in to things by helping Dad process a couple of deer, which he gave to us , which are in our freezer right now, which will provide us with meat through the winter.  It's a gift and we're very thankful for our annual deer meat that Dad gets for us.

James, Stephanie, and cousins Tyler, Ryan, Dylan, and Emmy came on Thanksgiving day and we had a lovely feast.  The grandkids all got in the hot tub with Grampy that afternoon and then Tyler and Dad went hunting and brought back a Thanksgiving deer.  I took Elise out to watch them work on it after they got back.  I'd like her to be familiar with where our food comes from, but she wasn't all that interested.  The day ended with Dane not feeling well.  He got some sort of virus, which passed from him to Elise to me.  Thankfully I was feeling well while they were sick and they were feeling well when I was sick, so we all got to help take care of each other.

We stopped by Grandpa and Grandma Haas's house on the way home.  Elise and I got a ride on the lawnmower sled (no snow required) and we enjoyed some of the best hospitality in the world.  I love to eat a meal at Grandma and Grandpa's house!

Now we're home and celebrating the Advent season as we try to establish some traditions of our own.  It's been especially fun to celebrate since Elise is starting to understand more of the world around her.  She was a bit upset that we were giving Christmas goodies away to the neighbors.  She wanted to keep them for herself.  Anything sugary is a "special treat" and she kept asking for a special treat yesterday.

Elise is a funny kid.  Some of the things she says and some of her antics are so funny.  I try to only laugh at the appropriate ones.  This past week we were talking about the new baby in my belly and how we don't know if it's going to be a boy or a girl.  That it is a surprise.  She started pulling at my belly saying "open it!"  When I was washing her hands after lunch one day I asked her "How's that?"  She replied "not bad!"  Then she got a little sassy with me this week when I wasn't giving her my full attention.  "Mommy, I'm talking to you!"  I'm trying to remember these things she says.

Enjoy this Advent Season!  I'm so thankful that Jesus came.

Dane with his Thanksgiving facial hair

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Quick Picture Update

A couple of weeks ago we took off to Memphis to celebrate with some of our good friends.  Their daughter turned one!  We love spending time with these folks that meant a lot to us during our time living in Memphis and still mean a lot to us.  The picture below was taken a few months ago.  Andy and Susan to the left of the picture are the one with the 1 year old, unfortunately when this picture was taken she was napping and when we were in Memphis for the birthday party I didn't take any pictures with our camera. 

We camped for one night on our way to Memphis and had a fun but rather sleepless night in the tent.  It was only Elise's second time camping, but it was her first time to eat a s'more.  She loved it all.  The picture above is one we took after our sleepless night.

This was Elise coming out of her room the other day, dressed up in her hat, carrying her bunny, and singing Jesus Loves Me ("Jesus, Jesus, I know" is her version)

We had us a little turtle for Halloween.  She had fun trick-or-treating at the Farmer's Market with Gran and then with our neighbors' girls on our street.  She was loving the candy she did get to eat, but we hid it from her afterwards and honestly I've been the one eating most of it with an occasional "special treat" for Elise.

Friday, October 4, 2013

A Sweet Mess!

She was a little muddy after "helping" Daddy work on the compost bin.

Monday, September 23, 2013

What Elise Is Up To

Elise is entering this stage of talking out more of her own thoughts instead of just repeating what we say.  But there is still a lot of repeating.  This week she started saying "Oh my goo-ness" and "Oh man!"  When we were in the truck yesterday she started talking to the cars in front of us.  "Go! Go! Cars! Go!"  Hmmmm...she's heard one of her parents say that.  She'll tell us stories in detail with facial expressions to boot.  We try to understand and nod and laugh at appropriate times:)

She also has a one-eyed stick horse that is perfectly fine to play with, but she prefers getting the toilet plunger from the bathroom and riding it instead saying "Giddyup, giddyup!"  Honestly the toilet plunger is probably more her size and a bit more manageable for her to ride.

She still loves giving hugs and kisses, sometimes a bit aggressively to kids her size.  She tackled her little friend over the other day with one of her hugs.  If she gets hurt or notices any sort of injury on her body she holds out the body part and say "kiss it".  Gladly!

She's getting pretty bossy too, which means she'll fit into the role of big sister well.  Which will be a new role for her in February if all goes well with the new little one coming along.

She got her first haircut last week.  The mullet was getting a bit out of hand, although I did miss it after we trimmed it off.  We had been talking about haircuts for a few weeks from one of her favorite books.  So she knew what a haircut was and welcomed it when we pulled out the scissors.

I had a broken leg scare this past week after she tripped while running in the house.  After she fell she couldn't bear weight on her right leg without crying and it wasn't much better the next morning.  I asked several people to pray and thankfully the next day when we went for x-rays there were no signs of broken bones.  She limped for a couple of days after that, but is back to her normal full-throttle self.

Haircut  in Pictures

Sunday, August 18, 2013


Today we spent some time with Dane's extended family and his cousin and sister were pulling up some Elise pictures on their phones from what seems like so long ago.  There was the Itty-Bitty Elise...precious newborn.  Then there was Chunka-Munka Elise...jolly baby.  Then the Knee-Walking on the move.  I realized that there are a lot of pictures of Elise out there in the world that I don't even know about.  They're fun to discover.  Here is one that I especially liked.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

North Carolina

This post is long overdue.  We got back from NC about a month ago.  Now that Dane has started back to work our "normal" routine is getting back into motion and I'm finally making myself sit down and do a blog post.  We had a great time as usual with a good mix of fun and work.  The pictures are mostly of all the fun and now that I look at them mostly featuring Elise's escapades.  We're missing a picture of Aunt Stephanie and pictures from our time visiting Great-Grandpa and Grandma Haas.  We also learned to make goat cheese and Dane learned some new carpentry skills to add to his repertoire. 

Elise with Grammy and Grampy

Blowing bubbles with Grammy

Fun in the sand with cousin Emmy

Emmy and Dylan

Trying to get Elise to give Uncle James a kiss


All the cousins...and Uncle James

Spanish moss hanging in the trees

She loves sand

Girly cousins

Running down the dock

Playing with cousin Emmy

Watching the goats

Getting used to the water

We both liked the swing

Tractor time with Daddy

An NC introduction to corn on the cob.  She'd even eat it raw!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Splash Time!

I'm trying to do at least one water activity per week with Elise.  She wasn't too thrilled with our first visit of the year to a local ark with fountains, but the 8ft high columns of water and the fact that the water was cold may have had something to do with it.  (And maybe Mommy trying to force her to like it wasn't a good idea)  When I was holding her near the fountain she started crying and saying "more!"  When I asked her what she wanted more of she said "Dada!"  I decided then that maybe I was being a little too forceful and handed her over to Dane, who tends to be a bit more gentle:)

As the water has warmed up at the different water parks so has she warmed up to liking the water.  The pictures are one of our quick afternoon splash times in our neighbor's pool. 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Treehouse Construction is Complete!

Here it is!  There are still some small whimsical things to do with the tree house...add flower boxes, a mailbox, a chalkboard, decorations inside, etc.  But it can now be played in.  A stuffed animals birthday has already been celebrated inside the tree house:)

Friday, June 14, 2013

Treehouse Update!

This thing is going to be pretty amazing.  A friend was over the other day and said, "Wow, this isn't what I was expecting.  I was picturing something more like what the Little Rascals had!"  Someone stopped yesterday to ask Dane how much he would charge to build one for his kids.  Maybe he should quit teaching and build tree houses instead.  I'm tellin' ya, it's amazing.  I'm a very proud wife and not trying to hide it:)

Dane is working hard to get it done by the time our neighbors' kids get home from vacation tomorrow.  They are going to be so excited!  But that did mean Dane getting up at 5:30 this morning mowing and hammering and being that annoying neighbor:)

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Yesterday and Today

Yesterday was a day of graduations.  Dane's school had their graduation featuring Michelle Obama as the speaker and then Dane's cousin, Anna, graduated yesterday evening.  Anna is the last one to graduate in that generation on Dane's side of the family.  Next up will be Elise!

I got a picture of Michelle Obama and Dane together!

I'm a bit giddy with excitement with all that's happening in the "homesteading" sense this spring.  I'll share of bit of it with you in pictures from today

Elise helping out with her wheelbarrow

The bees are busy.  We hope to get 2-3 boxes of honey this year 
 The backyard garden is growing with a few surprise squash and tomato plants that came from the compost used.  And we got the garden lot planted just before a slow steady rain on Friday.

 Dane is working on a tree house that will join our yard with our neighbors.  Kids and adults are excited about it!

 Strawberries picked and jam made, and more strawberries to come from the garden lot
Elise's roses are blooming

We went to the grand opening for Nashville's new convention center today.  Here is Elise enjoying some of the festivities


 Elise has an obsession with shoes right now.  She likes feet too and you'll often see her kissing her own feet.  Here she is examining her Daddy's holey socked feet and walking around in her Daddy's shoes.