Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Justus' first camping trip

We tried going camping with Elise and Justus a couple of months ago.  It was beautiful weather, warm during the day and just cool enough at night.  Everyone was excited and ready to go.  I had prepped some hobo dinners to cook over the fire for dinner and had biscuits ready to twist around sticks and cook over the fire for breakfast the next day.  We got to the park to find out that there was a fire ban.  Absolutely no fires allowed.  Well, what is camping without a fire? Not to mention my meal plans were ruined.  So we returned home and went to our friends' house to cook our dinner over a fire in their backyard.  It was fun, the hobo dinners turned out great, and the s'mores were yummy, but Elise has been asking about camping ever since.  She was also under the impression that anytime it rained was the perfect time to go camping

After mid-November hit, we were skeptical that a camping trip would happen any time before spring.  But lo and behold, this mild Memphis December.  Mid-November and a Tuesday night.  Who would have thought that would be the perfect time to camp?  And it was so wonderful.  The kids had a blast.  We just went with hotdogs, sweet potato chips and celery sticks for supper (easy!).  Dane had bought an 8 man tent at a thrift store and it was so wonderful and roomy.  Not at all like the last time we went camping with Elise.  We brought along a space heater that kept the tent the perfect temperature.  The sky was so clear.  I don't remember the last time I saw that many stars at night.  There were a couple of negatives though.  1) The downpour we had this morning.  I did look at the forecast on Monday and it predicted sunny and clear skies until Saturday.  I'm sure of it!  But I guess the rain made it seem just right to Elise.  2) I forgot the camera, so no pictures.

I think the next time we go will be with 3 kids!

Friday, December 4, 2015


For the first time in 5 or 6 years our whole family was together for the holidays.  The week was full.  Time together to play (lots of basketball (I beat Dane at a game of HORSE!), and a couple of games of Settlers), cook, eat, collect pecans (we're still working on shelling), and visit.  Pappaw was able to be there and then on Thanksgiving Day Grandma and Grandpa Haas and Aunt Trudy and Uncle Donnie came too.  It was a full house!  Do you like Dane's annual creative Thanksgiving facial hair?:)

Pantyhose fun!
Everyone got in on the action, even Grandma!

Elise loves Emylee Grace

Grammy and all the grandkids

Eli's birthday

Elise, Justus, and I were able to go celebrate Eli's 2nd birthday in early november.  The kids had a great time being together, except for when Justus was getting tackled by Eli:) The party was fun, complete with a fire and outdoor movie for the kids.  It's been a month since Eli's birthday, but Justus still sings "Hap Buhdaay Eli!"

Happy Birthday Eli!
Hanging out on a rusty tractor in the woods
Ready for bed

The response from these two when we say "Smile!"

Can you tell Justus isn't too keen on a picture with his Sissy?

Friday, October 2, 2015


Kids will figure out how to have fun with or without toys.  The kids were out playing the other day.  I'm often amazed at their creativity and curiosity.  Reminding myself of this is giving me the urge to purge the toy box again!

Justus and Elise on their boat

Elise working at her "computer" (aka old honey frame)

The computer kept giving us commands!

Justus is always asking for his "ammer" to work on his nails in a log project

Wednesday, July 29, 2015


Well, we moved!  I think most people who happen to look at this blog know that by now.  It's been in the works for quite sometime.  First just the concept, which was the longest phase, then the plan, then the actual work of selling a house, buying a house, and moving.

We're happy to be here.  We're still curious about what our life here will look like in the long run. Right now we're getting settled in, unpacking boxes, doing repairs, etc.

Here are a few pictures to give you a glimpse into what things look like.

Home Sweet Home

Front Porch - A Mess!

Shed/carport in the backyard.  That tree is a pecan tree!

Dane and the kids on top of the shed

Elise's favorite roof-top spot!

The bees.  The neighbors weren't sure about them!

We stayed at a friends house the first few days we were here.
He had a playground out front!

Dane working on a chicken coop 
Justus helping

Elise fell asleep while listening to music while we were working

Living room from the front door, looking into the dining room
You can see Elise's feet sticking out by the couch:)

Dining room looking into the kitchen and hallway

hallway from the kids room looking toward our room
As you can tell by the pictures things are still in disarray.  We're hoping to have things unpacked, cleaned up and repaired by the end of the week.  Then we can make the house look pretty!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Chicken Love

We hatched these chickens in an incubator.  They are less than 2 months old and are already so big.  Elise has taken to these chicks so much more than our chicks last year.  They are very loved on.  They even try sneaking them into the house, which is against the rules!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day

This picture was taken just days after I had become a Mama for the first time.  Four generations of women together.  Besides being Mother's Day, today would have been Mammaw's birthday.  I'm thankful for the amazing Mother that Mammaw gave me.

Happy Mother's Day to all you Mamas!  Grace and patience be with you.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Guess Who's Walking?

He's been on the verge of walking for about a week and he finally took his first steps today!
Yay Justus!!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

In Memory of Mammaw

A very special little lady died last week.  My Mammaw.  Growing up we didn't get to see my Mammaw and Pappaw very often.  Maybe once a year.  After becoming an adult and moving to Tennessee is when I began spending more time with them.  Mammaw was crippled from Rheumatoid arthritis my whole life.  I remember when she walked on her own and how she would wring out the dishcloth by pushing it on the side of the sink.  As a child I was fascinated by her crooked toes and fingers.  Since I've known her she's gotten progressively shorter and more crippled over the years.  As much as her crippled body held her back, she loved life and did as much as she could by herself.  When she could no longer cook by herself, she would let Pappaw know exactly what she wanted to eat.  And man was she a picky eater!  She had a dry wit that matched Pappaw's silly boisterous humor.  She always cried when we would leave after a visit.  Her prayers were quiet and fervent and usually tearful.  She would get on to Pappaw in her scratchy little voice for eating too much and for spending too much time on the computer.  But they loved each other and still slept in the same bed even after Pappaw gave her a black eye one night.  He is a loud and active dreamer.  Mammaw always said that's how she found out what Pappaw was thinking about.  She'd listen to him talk and preach and yell in his sleep.  She said that when he got too rowdy she'd just scootch to the edge of the bed to get away from him.  Some of my sweetest memories with Mammaw are from 2010 when I went to stay with them for about 3 weeks after she had a fall.  We talked a lot about her life and her memories.  I'm thankful for Mammaw's life.  I'm thankful for Pappaw and how he cared for her so many years.  I'm thankful for the friends that live near them that have cared for and loved them so well.  I'm going to miss my Mammaw.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Easter and Spring!

I really love this time of year!  We had a good weekend of celebrating Jesus.  We had a Seder dinner together with Aunt Alicia.  I tie-dyed eggs, which I highly recommend!  We went to our neighborhoods' Eggstravaganza.  We had our second annual neighbor Easter egg hunt.  It's much more fun than the Eggravaganza's hunt.  We actually hide the eggs.  We celebrated at church and then had dinner with family.  And we have chicks!  We bought some fertilized eggs from Craigslist and 4 out of 6 hatched.  Elise is at the perfect age for chicks.  Between her and our neighbor, Ruby, they are getting LOTS of love.  The garden in growing!  Sugar snap peas (or as Elise says - snugar snap peas), kale, spinach and lettuce.  All of it fills me with joy!

The tie-dyed eggs

After our backyard egg hunt

Justus and chicks

I just thought I'd include this sweet picture!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Happy Birthday Justus!

Today is the big day.  Actually in about 30 minutes is when he showed up one year ago.  We are having a party on Saturday to celebrate but Gran and Grandpa came over this evening for a special birthday visit.