our family happenings


I picked 8 cups of raspberries the other day from the side of the road!!  I made a raspberry ripple tea cake with some of them and froze the rest.


The library book sale was a few days after I came back from my trip.  Sarah was the only one who would agree go with me.  But then, as we were browsing, Jacob called my cell phone.  He had gotten home from work and wanted to join us at the library.  It really blessed my heart to have my oldest and my youngest children with me at my favorite place in town.  I ended up with a big box of books for myself and the kids and Jacob bought……ONE BOOK.


“Mom,” said Ethan and Tessa, “The sky is really cool we thought you might want to take a picture of it.”  Another heart-blessing.  Yes indeedy.


Then I turned around and took a photo of Grace and her friend who were right behind me enjoying the evening sky.


I took the children to the batting cages and mini golf.  This is Grace, Caleb, and Sarah, with Dave and Seth in the background.  David won the course out of all of them and Caleb came in last.


Seth got done with regular season Little League and then was picked for the All-Star team.  After their wins, the coach treated them to ice cream downtown.


Rich and I relaxed on blankets under a pine tree.  I had to get up to run up the hill to the house, to retrieve my camera with the zoom lens:


Because there was a big heron perched in the tall dead pine tree.


We took the kids to the little league fields for batting practice.


I love this photo of Seth so much.


We took them to a huge used bookstore about an hour from home.  They were delighted with the cats.


We went out for ice cream that same day.  (This was during the super hot days we had recently.)


Aren’t they just the dearest and cutest?  Right behind Seth is Jacob’s girlfriend, Brittnee.  I had braided all three girls’ hair in two french braids that morning before we left.  (Jacob and Ethan didn’t come with us).  And as you can see, Caleb is taller than Grace now.



One day at home Seth painted himself with mud.


And naturally had to swim in the pond to get clean again.


I had to run errands downtown and the kids played at the park.  Aren’t they beautiful?


After their second-to-last game of the season, Seth was given a game ball for his good playing.  We absolutely adore watching our boys play, and getting to know the other parents.  I love how sports build community.  In winning this game, the boys made it to the Championship game.  They lost that one, but it had been the first time in about 10 years that our town made it that far for this age group.


Another photo to treasure and hold close to my heart of memories…….Seth loves his Dad so much, and Rich loves his little Scrapper/Tiger/Sethie.


Dear Jacob and Brittnee.  They light up our family with joy.



MORE BERRIES from up the road!!!  I remember this was on the 4th of July.  I can remember that because I eventually had to laugh when I realized we were both wearing green when we should have been wearing red, white, or blue.


Seth did all the grilling on the 4th of July.  (Just kidding).


Pretty Girlies.  Sarah, Grace, Erinn, and Brittnee (their boyfriends were playing basketball on the driveway and they sat on the bench to watch).


That morning when my cat matched my coffee cup.


Relaxing with my girls.  🙂  We talked and flopped on the bed and looked at photos and baby books.


Seth finally got tired.


I made the boys match socks.


Later on that day, they found me in the laundry room to show me the turtle that Seth stepped on and found outside.  Look at its claws!!


Sarah in a tree by the river at a baseball game.


I was watching the kids swim when the chickens came over to me to say hello.


My niece Abbie graduated from HS and I took this photo of Dave and my mom at her party.


My brother Nate and his wife are about to have a baby girl!!


On Sunday morning, Grace had Sarah put her hair in a braid.


When she was done, Grace had her do it over because she had accidentally left a chunk of hair out.  So after she braided it over again, she realized she had left the chunk out AGAIN and started crying……..but Grace let it stay that way that time.


During Seth’s last baseball game that same afternoon.


Ethan went camping with his girlfriend’s family and Tessa sent me this photo of him.


Sarah’s raspberry teacake remains…..she had two pieces for breakfast.


Rich and I took Jacob and Michael downtown for ice cream and Jacob was going through the 1,000 items stuffed in his wallet.  We were laughing and laughing but you can’t tell Rich was happy by this photo because he actually wasn’t that happy….he was in pain.



Every single solitary photo in this post so far was taken with a heavy heart because we knew that Rich was going to have surgery soon for his neck.  He has been living with a very damaged disc for several years and we finally decided to get it surgically repaired (replaced).  We were all nervous and concerned for him but having him in pain all the time made us sad, too.   He had the surgery on Tuesday of this week (just 2 days ago!!!)  This was the waiting room where I sat and waited for him to be done.


And here he is after a very successful repair!!  The doctor only had to replace one disc and it went “textbook perfect” in his own words.  In order to replace the disc, the doctor had to make an incision on Rich’s neck in the front.  Before the surgery, he marked the incision site with a purple marker and accidentaly marked Rich’s chin as well.  This bothered the nurse and after I took the photo she scrubbed it off.


After a six hour recovery, he was cleared to go home!


This was taken yesterday by our daughter Grace.  We went on a short walk.  Rich already felt and looked like a new man.  He is so happy after living with chronic neck/shoulder pain for two years.


We spent a lazy day, as Ethan was gone to Vermont to get Seth, David, and Caleb from wrestling camp (they were there from Sunday-Wednesday)   My sister had Sarah for two days.  So we watched TV, read books, and took naps together on the couch.  It was marvelous.




And an egg (dyed with berry juice).


After dinner last night they helped me pick another 6 cups!




Rich and the kids are waiting for me to finish this.  We are going downtown to the coffee shop and the park.  Rich has the rest of this week plus all next week to recover from surgery.  He’s doing great and my heart is light and happy.



6 thoughts on “our family happenings

  1. Love to hear about the happenings in your lives. I can’t believe Abby graduated! Time flys! Love the baseball pix on the ground! Glad Rich is feeling better! Summer time is great! Wonderful photos!

  2. oh I’m so glad the surgery went so well and that you are surrounded by family all summer!!! I have so loved following your lives through this blog and Facebook through all these years!!!

  3. I love that beautiful sky. I love all your pictures, and reading about your family happenings. So glad Rich had the surgery and is recovering well. Did Sarah climb that tree by herself, or did she have help getting up there?

  4. It’s so interesting to find someone who shares my name! Does it rhyme with Rhonda and Wanda like mine does? Your pics look like the Midwest. What state do you live in? Ohio, like me? I’m guessing we’re nearly the same age. I like the description following your name: wife, mom, child of God. I share the last description. I am single; Jesus is my Beloved, and I am HIS! I come from a family of 8, and I live alone in a rented trailer. But I am up at my parents place several times a week usually. I don’t have children of my own, but I enjoy my nieces and nephews, and unofficially claim my 60-some former students (over 14 years of teaching) as “mine”. I am currently working as an editor for a Christian publisher, and I love it! I’d love to hear from you!
    Shanda Marie Good

    • Hello!!! So nice to meet you, too! But alas, my name is spelled the same as yours but pronounced Sh-ANNE-DUH. I have never met anyone with my same name in real life, but have come across one or two others here on the internet. It’s such a rare name. I hardly think about it, but when I do I am always glad my parents were creative with my name. Hope you visit here again! Do you have a blog, too?

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