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Time and how fast it can go has always been incredible to me. I wake up, and the next thing I know, it’s time for bed. The second I give birth, my baby is already walking, talking (and sometimes sassing…), and growing more and more independent with every blink. With 2019 already in full swing, I’ve already been reminiscing about 2018. It wasn’t all fantastic–we had a battle with ant invasions, fleas, pinworms, a case of bursitis, stitches, and other unexpected bumps in the road (I’ll let you guess who had what). But, in a lot of ways, 2018 was really awesome. We found out we’d be welcoming another boy into the family, Jack and I visited Portugal, the girls and I donated our hair, we had loads of fun with each other and extended family, and in general, life was pretty awesome. When we returned home from our annual Christmas trip to Nebraska, we had our own family Christmas celebration
Evelyn’s t-rex bling.

Though Santa is much more practical when he drops off gifts here (kids literally got toothbrushes, gloves, coats, and winter boots), he did splurge on some presents that were a little more fun. Like blingy dinosaur necklaces, silly toys, and wetsuits. 


That’s right. Wetsuits. Jack is so excited to go surfing, snorkeling, and maybe even scuba diving someday, that Santa brought him (and me!) our very own wetsuits. The only problem?

They cause shrinkage.
They apparently cause your hair to go blond, too…
It was okay. Jack returned to his full height after removing the wetsuit.

Since our family Christmas and New Year’s Eve party, so much has happened. For one, we went roller skating for the first time, a reward for the girls being on the honor roll.

It wasn’t nearly as easy as the girls envisioned it would be. They came back battered and bruised, crying a few times, but insisting they want to go again.

Down goes Kate! She took a few of her friends with her.

Since Parton’s one bad day, he’s returned home and is now occupying every last square inch of our deep freeze.


Claire is back at gymnastics and I can see constant improvement in her from week to week. Most of all, I love her enthusiasm for the sport and her open encouragement of her peers.

We’ve had a few cold, snowy days but that doesn’t stop us from enjoying some outdoor cooking, thanks to Henry who manned the grill.

We celebrated twelve years of marriage by petting and feeding a zonkey. Yes. A zonkey, among other strange and fascinating animals.
Evelyn posed as Mary Todd Lincoln, because, why not?
She’s got the stoic expression down pat.
We’ve been outside to go sledding and ice skating multiple times. It never gets old!

I’ve gotten back into doing a few small home improvements here and there, like the half wall in the front entry room, so the rickety banister that was there doesn’t leak children down onto the steps.

Zoey and Henry helped, of course.

School is over halfway finished for the year and the girls are thriving, from mastering their testing, reading goals, and winning water conservation drawing competitions. ‘Cause water conservation is critical, as is art.


We check on the animals every day to make sure they’re happy, healthy, and well-fed. Some of them, like Dancer and Hercules, are a little too content with their rations and are getting a bit pudgy. Better too hefty in the winter for some insulation anyway.


We’ve run family basketball drills (that’s one of the benefits of having so many kids, right? Your own basketball team?)…

Henry going in for a slam dunk.
…and have enjoyed a few family bike rides down the driveway when the weather is nice enough.
Zoey in awe of everyone’s bike riding abilities.

And of course, there have been endless crafting sessions, where the kids literally create their own small worlds straight out of their imaginations while I try not to cringe over the mess it makes.


All in all, it has been a very busy yet typical start to the year for us, full of accomplishment, waiting for warmer weather, but enjoying the unique opportunities the season provides. So, 2019 seems to be off to a wonderful start!

Zoey is still working on the concept that food stays on the plate.


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Our budding family

Welcome to the farm!

True stories of raising children, remodeling, braving the elements and plotting out life, all while living on a humble acreage in central Indiana.

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