Family Time

What a fast summer!!  I still cannot believe it is over and we are going on our second week of school. Although fast, it was jam packed with fun.  The highlight of which was our annual family date weekend.

We started this tradition two years ago and have looked forward to it every year since.  This year we decided to enjoy our weekend right here in our beautiful city of Indy!  So many places to see and activities to do.  It also ended up being very budget friendly and nice to come home and enjoy our own beds before heading out again.  Not that the idea of 5 of us in one hotel room doesn’t sound relaxing and fun😬😳. 
We started off our date day at the beautiful IMA Hundred Acres.  The last time we went there Liesel was 10 days old!  Cannot believe it has taken us so long to go back, amazing trails, beautiful outside sculptures and picnic areas. 

        
    
   

We enjoyed lunch at the Circle Centre mall where the girls danced to live music and even got to watch drumline battles! After which both girls decided they were going to play drums  when they are older! 

  

Then we took the rest of the day and explored downtown.  Civil War Monument (thank you Conner prairie for making this easy for the girls to enjoy), the Circle, the downtown library, and the Canal. 
   

   
    
    
 

Day 1 ended with our annual stop at the Old Spaghetti Factory and of course ice cream at Brics on the Monon in Broad Ripple. 

    
   

Sunday started with everyone sleeping until almost 8am (incredible).  We then spent the day at the Children’s Museum, lunched at Bazbeauxs in Broad Ripple and finished the day swimming in our pool at home.  A truly perfect weekend, one that recharged us and bid a fabulous summer farewell.    

   
 

 

Choosing Joy

This entire summer the kindergarten cloud has been looming over all of our heads.  I know it’s happening and I know there is nothing I can do about it!  So, I’ve decided to embrace it ( I know less than two weeks away…it’s about time).  But I want to be excited about it, and that is why I’m choosing joy! 

 
Joy that we have raised a little baby who has grown into a little girl more than ready for school!  This next stage will be a huge change for our family.  We will exchange our lazy go with the flow days for a schedule that involves bus riding, teacher conferences and afternoon homework.  But we will embrace it with a smile and enjoy every minute!   

Kindergarten, we see you!  As desperately as I wish I could make you disappear, I know you won’t and I know it is our time! We are excited for a new teacher to adore. One who’s name we will all know and use daily.  We are excited for the new friends and families we will get to know and love.  And most importantly we are excited for the love of Christ we can pour out on to all those we meet this year! 

 School shopping has been done, bags are packed, and this girl is ready to go!  
Pure JOY!!! 

 

Strawberry Jammin’

Strawberry season is a favorite over here!  Something we look forward to every summer. This summer we anticipated it even more because it was one of the activities on Liesel’s summer to dos that could be done with a broken arm.  

  

  

    

  

We picked a total of 17lbs!!🍓🍓🍓🍓. On the ride home I began dreaming of all I would make with these delicious berries…muffins, pancakes, shortcake, smoothies and of course JAM!  Little did I know how much my three little fruit flies would consume!  I had none to freeze for smoothies!!  Luckily We went right to work on jam.

The past few years I made freezer jam and have never been satisfied.  It always lacked the rich sweet berry flavor the stovetop kind had.  This year I came across a Crockpot jam recipe and could not wait to try!!   It turned out great!!! So much flavor and easy easy easy✔️

What you’ll need

* 2lbs fresh strawberries ( I used about 4lbs)

* 1cup sugar

* 1/4c lemon juice

* 1 package of pectin


Spray or grease your crockpot.  Place ingredients in a large bowl.  Using a potato masher, mix until combined.   

    
   Place mixture into crockpot and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4.  Stir occasionally.  

 
Once my just mixture had thickened, I placed it in the food processor for a bit to get consistency smooth.  

Then pour jam into mason jars.  You can put jar into fridge for upto two weeks, or into freezer. Enjoy!!

   

F I V E and Fabulous!

On Friday our Liesel girl turned 5, 5!!! In five short years this girl has changed our world for the better and we could not be more in love with her!

At 8lbs 13oz and after 28 hours of labor our Liesel Cosette was born on June 26, 2010.

    

It’s amazing how I look at these pictures and I can instantly remember kissing her soft newborn head for the first time.  I can almost smell her sweet baby smell.   

This year has been absolutely fabulous!!  I think the word for her fifth year would be mature.   Liesel matured into a five year old preschool graduate who is reading and ready for kindergarten!  There were a lot of changes she endured, challenges she faced, and love she poured out to everyone.   

     

We had such a blast celebrating our big girl!  Liesel had a special early ballerina beach birthday party in Michigan, surrounded by family.   

        

Her actual birthday began with a pancake breakfast, followed by a special day with Mimi and Papa at the Zoo and Butterly gardens, and ended with a surprise ice cream date!  

             

Every year gets better and better!  I’m sad to say goodbye to our four year old but I’m excited for this next year!! Kindergarten here we come!

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Liesel’s 5th year interview…(4yr interview)

My favorite food is: Mac & Cheese (cringe)

When I grow up I want to be: a cheerleader, like Lydia

My favorite color is: rainbow color

The coolest person I know is: Drew B.

My favorite thing to do outside is: play in the pool

If I could go anywhere in the world I would go to: my cousins house

When I was little I used to: drink milk from a bottle

My best friend is: Evan

My favorite song is: Jesus loves me

My favorite thing to do with my sisters is: go to the park with them 

My favorite book is: Winnie the Pooh

My favorite movie is: Rapunzel 

What I’m most excited to do now that I’m 5: the monkey bars (hopefully without breaking her arm😉)


Hoosier-versary!

6 years!! This weekend marked our sixth year in Indy!  I really cannot believe it.

It’s been six years since these two newly weds packed up and left Ann Arbor, the only home we’d ever known.

  

Starting a new adventure in a brand new place, we had no idea all that God would have in store for us.  

  

  

 

An amazing job for Eric.  A church to call home. Many wonderful friends.  And welcoming our three beautiful daughters.  Gods blessings are endless!  

     
 Looking forward to all the adventures yet to come.
Indiana, you are our HOME! 

Summer To-Do’s

With the warm weather last week, I feel like we’ve stolen a few early summer days and it’s been wonderful! The kiddie pool has already made a permanent mark on our lawn and the smell of sunscreen has been detected on our girlies skin.  After-dinner walks have become the norm as well as park dates with friends.   

             

I want to soak up every minute.  This kindergarten thing has my emotions running wild (as you are well aware of) and I truly desire to maximize my days with the girls, for they are fleeting.  

Earlier today I had Liesel make a list of things she wants to do this summer.  With no help from me, here was her list 

 In case your aren’t fluent in 4 (almost 5!!!)year old English😉, I’ll give you her answers. Go to the beach, zoo, strawberry picking, lake, baseball game and water slide.   I decided to make a list of my to dos as well.  (Although Liesel did hit on many important ones.) This way we can check off the activities as we complete them and add new ones as we go along.  My list so far:

* Strawberry and Blueberry picking: at our favorite local farm, Spencer’s

*IMA 100 Acresis a park we haven’t visited since Liesel was a baby!  Excited for the girls to experience this attraction. 

* Indianapolis Zoo: a must do each summer.  The girls are already looking forward to their trip with Mimi and Papa!

* Hamilton 4 H fair: a free event that is wonderful with kids! Horse shows, cattle barns and more crafts than you could imagine.

* Monon Water Parkwe have been waiting until the girls were old enough to try this out.  This year will be perfect, water slides (checking off Liesels list) and spray parks, lazy river… 

*Outdoor Concerts: we are so blessed to have many venues all over Hamilton county that put on *free* concerts. We are excited to make these evening concerts a priority this year!

*Indians Game: we have a fabulous minor league team and stadium in downtown Indy and although we missed the games last year, we will be going at least once this year! 

* Indiana State Fair:  and of course we will wrap up the summer with a trip (or two) to the state fair! 

We will also be taking our trips to Michigan and Wisconsin to visit friends and family (where we will check off the lake) as well as daily trips to our neighborhood pool and local parks/splash pads.  The summer always seems to fly by and I’m sure this one will be no different.  Let me know if you have any must dos for us to add to our list!  I can’t wait for all the fun in store! 

a chapter finished

Today was liesel’s last day as a preschooler.    

What a special time it has been. I will mourn you, preschool.  Everything about it from juggling three girlies through the snow covered parking lot into the building, to watching the little ducklings outside the courtyard each afternoon.   

 

Liesel has loved every minute of school.  Always eagerly anticipating the night before.  Excited to see her friends and teachers and wondering what job she will have.  

  

 

What a precious precious time these last two years have been.  I know I still have many preschool years left with Moira and Emaline.  But never again will I have three littles under my wing as we head in and out of those front doors.