Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Pumpkins & Ghords

So if you’ve looked at Facebook at all in the last month you’ve, I’m sure, been inundated with pictures of the sweetest kids dressed in their best selecting the most PERFECT pumpkin in the patch.  Right?
Well I guess we’re joining in on the fun.  You know I couldn’t help myself. I’ve been dreaming about this trip since September last year!
This past weekend we went to the pumpkin patch for the second time this year.  We went the first weekend of October, and guess what?! They didn’t have pumpkins yet! WHAT?! So we had a do-over this past weekend :-) For the past 2 years we have had Aunt Nana go with us (2014 & 2015) and we have made so many memories with her.  Sadly she couldn’t go with us this year waaaaaaaaaaa!  Even though Aunt Nana couldn’t be with us this year, we made the best memories we could. 
When Aunt Nana and I were in youth group at church we always sold pumpkins to raise money for mission trips, so we always take the kids to a church pumpkin patch.  This year we tried out a new church patch and it was perfect.  They had great areas for pictures and a nature trial to take right around the corner.  DSC_0670DSC_0677DSC_0676DSC_0686DSC_0692DSC_0711DSC_0718
Last year Dutch was only interested in the ghords.  This year was no different.  I don’t know what it is about them that he likes so much (maybe they are light enough for him to pick up by himself?), but he was not entertained by the pumpkins at all.  Ellis got a pumpkin and Dutch wanted a ghord :-)
I’m pretty sure the picture above is my new favorite.  I can’t stop smiling when I see it!
And of course what kind of mother would I be if I didn’t compare my babies each year?Pumpkin Patch through the years
We weren’t there long, just for the morning, but it’s amazing how those little moments will be solidified in my mind for all time.  We had a blast and my heart was filled with joy as I watched my babies explore the pumpkin patch with big enthusiastic eyes.  I am not wishing this next year away but I can only imagine how much fun we will have next year at the pumpkin patch with two walking and talking.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Fall Books for Kiddos

I am always trying to rotate our books.  Dutch is a big reader, so we go through a lot of books.  But just like I get tired of reading the same books over and over again, he gets tired of hearing the same books.  From an educational perspective, I know that when he is starting to recite the words with me, or even say them before I can read them, that he has memorized the book, and it's time to move on and incorporate some new material.  As we go through and learn about the different seasons, it's a great time to switch out some of our books.  Our favorite fall books right now are about football, the seasons, Halloween, & Thanksgiving, and here are our favorite fall books right now:
Fall Books For ChildrenDSC_0517Pumpkins Pumpkins Everywhere
Football with Dad : It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown : Pumpkin Patch Blessings
Pumpkin Party! : Here We Go, Steelers! Here We Go! : I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie
DSC_0518Mickey's Spooky Night
'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving : Little Critter Fall Storybook Collection
Disney Mickey Mouse Happy Halloween Little Pop-Up Sound : The Night Before Thanksgiving
A Halloween Scare in Texas
DSC_0519The Berenstain Bears Thanksgiving Blessings, Harvest Festival, and the Prize Pumpkin
I've got my eyes on some new books I want to get to add to our stash (thank you Amazon Prime!)
Please tell me what are YOUR favorite fall books?! 
What new books do I need to add to our collection?
Better yet, Christmas is right around the corner, what are your favorite Christmas books for children?

Friday, October 21, 2016

Babies in the Pew

From the title of this post you think you know where I’m going with this, but I bet you’re wrong.  This is not a rant on whether or not I think children should be allowed in “big church”. Nope.  I’m not going that way at all. Ha!  In fact, I’m certain that the Bible pretty effectively addresses that issue, so I don’t need to go there.Babies in the Pew-2
This past Sunday, miracle of all miracles happened.  Not only were we not late for church, but we were EARLY. What?!?!?! That never happens anymore.  Like I can’t express that enough. NEVER.  Ellis was in big church with us and Dutch was in the nursery.  Ellis’ 2nd feeding of the morning always happens during big church so I just wear her during service and then take her to her Sunday School class when we go to our class.  In true, Type A fashion, the Mr. and I were in the front and I was wearing Ellis.  We run like clockwork folks; Mr. & Mrs. Predictable.  We always sit close to the front, but because we were so early on Sunday, no one sat in front of us.  No big deal, we’re in the front. 

That is until Ellis is ready for that 2nd feeding.  In the past I have gone to the nursing room, but lately (like the past month or so) I have just covered myself and tucked between the Mr. and a blanket and remained in the auditorium to nurse.  Baby is quiet to eat and fall asleep and I can worship next to my husband.  This is a big thing for me.  I know that as Christians we can worship anywhere, but I truly desire to sit next to my husband during service.  Thus the past few weeks I’ve just been nursing during big church instead of leaving.

So back to this past Sunday. Ellis is ready for her feeding and I go to feed her, only to realize (as I’m getting situated if you know what I mean) that I’m sitting in the front of the church.  No one is in front of me.  No one EXCEPT the pastor and the choir and the orchestra; all watching me get ready to nurse my kid.  Thank you Lord for your perfect timing…. even in the embarrassing times.  It gets better folks.  So the message on Sunday was about 1 Peter 2:1-3:

“Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good”

As the pastor breaks down this verse of scripture and I nursed my baby, I felt like we gave a nod to each other.  It was all relevant and the most perfect timing.  This entire experience, us being early to sit in the front without anyone in front of us and reading a scripture on milk as I nursed my child, was no coincidence.  God doesn’t work like that; He has a purpose for everything.

Like a newborn baby craves and depends  on milk, we should also being cultivating a hunger for God’s word and a relationship with the Father.  We are God’s children and if we were acting like His children, we should be learning how to grow our spiritual selves.  In that sense, we all are babies, and we as the body of Christ are the babies that should be flooding the church pews to grow and mature our spiritual lives.

Much like babies who need their mother's milk to survive, so we also need the pure nurishing and filling Word to grow in our own salvation.  Thank you Lord for painting such a vibrant and clear picture for me (and the pastor, choir, & orchestra and anyone who might actually read this ole blog of mine) of what it means to crave the word, and to be a child of God on the front row thirsty to be fed.  Truly my friends, taste and see, that the Lord is in fact so good.
Babies in the Pew-1

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Monday, October 17, 2016

Honestly Hawley {September}

After a couple of really busy weeks I’m trying my best to get back on track. You know, sometimes it’s just so hard to get back on track once you’ve gotten distracted.  I’m coming back though. I think I can. I think I can I think I can. haha  September was a great month, football is back, the PSL is back, the temperature is starting to cool off, and we’re seeing pumpkins everywhere!   The only thing about September though, was I think it went faster.  I always think the fall moves fast. We get so excited about it and it’s filled with anticipation, and then it just flies right by.  Before  you know it, it’s gone faster than it came.  So I guess a safety belt is in order and try to hold on because the next few months are going to be filled with fun and will go fast!
So here are the honest, unedited, unscripted scenes of our September life :-)
Honestly HawleyDSC_0023DSC_0008DSC_0050DSC_0081DSC_0063DSC_0118DSC_0146DSC_0158DSC_0183DSC_0017DSC_0196DSC_0198DSC_0207DSC_0214DSC_0215DSC_0359DSC_0370DSC_0385DSC_0416DSC_0443DSC_0507DSC_0508DSC_0527DSC_0544DSC_0546DSC_0550DSC_0569DSC_0621DSC_0631DSC_0634DSC_0676DSC_0657DSC_0648DSC_0688DSC_0694DSC_0725DSC_0710DSC_0714
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