21 December 2013


While I don't particularly enjoy working in fresh snow, it does make for a beautiful work environment.

16 December 2013

silly girls

Today Saphyra and Maya were more inseparable than usual. One was not ever more than a few steps away from the other. My instinct is that they were using the buddy system because of the fog's reduction of visibility.

Still, it was entertaining to watch them eating from the same hay pile all day... And licking the ice together instead of drinking from their heated water bucket. I don't think I've ever seen horses willingly share such a tiny area, let alone choose ice over readily available water.

12 December 2013

hypocrisy no more

Today I suddenly realized how very little energy I invest into my marriage. All my inner critiques of our lack of romance make me quite the hypocrite. So I'm going to try to bring back all the little things that I used to do . . .

Putting a little more effort into my appearance, for example. The goal here is primarily to make sure I'm not still wearing pajama bottoms when he gets home from work, but doing something with my hair each day would also be good.

11 December 2013

sisterly love

The girls were being very noisy while Yonah was trying to concentrate on schoolwork, so I asked them to play in their room until he was done. 20 minutes later there wasn't a single noise coming from that part of the house. I decided to see what havoc was being wreaked.

Instead I found that the girls were in lying quietly in bed for an early nap.

Arabelle tells me that she was helping Lila feel better because she had been crying.

10 December 2013

fetching water

There's a little song at the end of Disney's version of The Jungle Book that, for some reason, really resonated with my best friend and I. It is called My Own Home.

We were always singing it. It strongly influenced all our pretend games. It even played a large role in my love of reading and writing, as it whetted my appetite for exploring different cultural aspects.

I haven't thought of the tune in years.

But with a frozen hose at the horse farm today, I suddenly found myself the girl that "must go to fetch the water." The irony of that moment was too delicious.


27 May 2013

Week 21: Free

Once again, last week's post is late.

And also the pictures were taken by iPhone and not the camera.

My camera battery is dead, and we have not been able to find either the backup battery or the charger since moving. This angers me.

Project 52

52 Weeks

I was tempted to climb up on the gazebo for a better shot, but decided I had better be a good example for the kids.

18 May 2013

Week 20: Bright

In memory of a dear friend:

Project 52

52 Weeks

Thank you for letting me love you.

12 May 2013

Week 19: Drama

There was plenty of drama last week as we prepared for the adventure of moving into our first house. There was lots of painting, lots of cleaning, lots of packing, and lots more cleaning.

But we're here, now!

The week ahead is going to be full of unpacking and, let's be honest, plenty of arguments about how things will be arranged in the new home.

Note: Before anyone whines about accuracy, I will admit these pictures were technically not taken last week. I just love these pictures from this morning so much more than any of the pictures I took during the correct time period. You'll forgive me just this once, right?

Project 52

(the pink in the vase is not photoshopped)

52 Weeks

I think the lady heading this one up is done, but I'm going to finish the year out on this challenge anyway.

04 May 2013

Week 18: Perspective

First of all, I must share some incredible news.

Remember that house we were trying to buy two months ago?

God gave it to us!

Why else would the seller put up with our realtor's desperate attempts to get the house, even though it so obviously wasn't going to work for us?

Even though that house would have been snatched up in an instant by someone else?

But the seller kept signing extensions.

Again and again.

And suddenly, miraculously, the loan was accepted.

The house is ours!

And now the following weekly pictures will make more sense.

52 Weeks Challenge

Project 52

27 April 2013

Week 17: Good

Project 52

The only thing that beats having a good time with friends is having a (safe) good time with friends at a bonfire.

I couldn't decide on my Week 52 picture . . . 
Want to help me pick?

These three are my favorites.

21 April 2013

Catching Up: Weeks 15 and 16

The pictures in this post were all taken with my phone, so the quality suffers a little. But I'm impressed with the technology that allows me to take decent pictures with a phone.

Week 15

Project 52
Tell Me a Story

52 Weeks Challenge

Week 16

Project 52
Low Light

52 Weeks Challenge

08 April 2013

Week 14: Part 2

This is the picture that I took for my 52 Weeks challenge. 

I find it to be a delightful contrast to a picture I took only a few months ago.

07 April 2013

Week 14: {clutter}

This week I only had the one theme to work with. The leader of the second photography challenge has been crazy busy. I did take a {free} picture anyway, but I haven't edited it yet. I'll try to post it tomorrow.

Project 52

Every day after school, our dining table winds up looking like this . . . Books, crayons, papers, and pencils all over the place, the pencil sharpener, drawers half-open, and crumbs and a paper towel left over from the toddler's snack at the other end.

30 March 2013

Week 13: {sky} {my world}

52 Weeks

Project 52
My World

While technically this picture is a bit premature, the pursuit of owning this special horse is very much a big part of my world right now. Horses and kids consume my waking hours, and I love it that way.

27 March 2013

big girl

I met Shuga's hoof trimmer yesterday, and the vet walked me through the shots issue today.

This meant that the kids and I could hang out with our future horse some more. You know, since we were out there anyway.

Lila started screaming any time I or the kids came anywhere near a horse.

Soon, though, she was feeding Shuga treats. Then she was helping me groom her.

And finally, she was adamant that she would get a turn riding, too.

I am so proud of her.

26 March 2013


We went to visit Shuga today. She was gorgeous and patient and gentle, as always.

We kind of like her.

A lot.

The kids took turns riding and leading her around.

As I watched them interact with her, and she with them, I realized that she isn't just my perfect horse anymore.

As I continue to get to know her better, I find myself completely stunned.

Surely such an incredible match can only be found in a soulmate.

Week 12: Black and White Self

Admittedly, I am not proud of this picture. I especially hate it when I remember how I had such amazing photos that I had taken this week . . . One random little technology glitch completely erased them.

This is the only one that survived the week.

I suppose I could take a "catch up" week, but since I have a photo that was taken during the week that actually fits both themes, I'm using it.

On the positive side, I learned that you can actually shoot in monochrome with a DSLR, instead of editing your pictures to be black and white. It's been making that style much more accessible for me.

16 March 2013

Week 11: {warm} {eyes}

I've already shared one of this week's photos but I didn't know it at the time. I wait until Saturday to pick out my challenge pictures, just in case I end up taking a better one.

52 Weeks

I hadn't intended this to be my week's photo. I was just trying to take Sugar's picture today when she moved, and then I found that I love it too much to put up a different shot.

Project 52

You can tell things are getting warm when horse hair covers the ground . . .

14 March 2013

how quickly they learn

The kids are zooming through school like pros.

I haven't actually taught Yonah how to read for quite a while. Our reading "lessons" now are simply practicing and testing his reading comprehension.

He's been doing so well, in fact, that today we went to buy some more school books. We were focusing primarily on reading as far as "real" school goes. Now that he can learn more independently and is better at following instructions, we're switching our focus to math and science.

Arabelle is also doing well. She has spent the time so far practicing drawing and identifying shapes and letters, and specifically writing her name. This last month has seen an incredible amount of improvement.

We've tested the waters with reading lessons a few times, but she wasn't ready for it yet. Recently she's begun doing the first pages of Yonah's math book and has really excelled at it. We'll be trying reading lessons again soon.

Lila is also really into the school thing, though hers can't really be called "school" yet.

All in all, it's been a whole lot of fun for all of us.

10 March 2013


Spring is coming!

I smell it in the air.

I feel it in the sun's warmth.

I hear it in the birds' excited chirping.

But mostly I see it on the ground.

Who needs to ask a groundhog when there are horses nearby?

09 March 2013

Week 10: {Light} {Perspective}

Project 52

My picture for this week has more to do with my internal light. When I am around horses, the depression I've battled for most of my life just disappears. This picture is not a "good" one, but it - and this horse in particular - makes my heart sing.

I loved watching her in today's jumping show. Now I have an idea of how awesome she and I will look together after some more training.

52 Weeks

If there was one thing that ever gave me a new perspective, it was becoming a mother.

06 March 2013

Week 9: {new} {architecture} and an explanation

I'm still not sure how to share last week's post, but today I'm going to try.

Last month was a month of house shopping. It was an intense roller coaster of emotion, soaring in exhilaration only to crash into despair a moment later.

Houses were selling left and right. Many had offers accepted on them their very first day on the market. Many others had offers accepted almost the very instant we expressed an interest in them.

But we finally found our perfect house. The only real flaw was that it wasn't a horse property, but this I could deal with. Everything else was almost as if it had been made just for us. We rushed to put in an offer and it was accepted. In our minds we had already moved in. We were planning future expansions to make us even happier there.

Then everything unraveled with a phone call from the loan agent. He had been over-eager in pre-approving us, and the loan wasn't going through. Kim's suspicion that his job is too new was correct.

The crushing devastation we felt is pretty indescribable.

The loan agent and realtor are still working hard to make this happen if at all possible. We are still moving forward with the paperwork just in case God decides to pull a miracle out of thin air, but we are resolved that it won't happen. We feel far too raw to allow ourselves to hope.

I debated taking a different picture for the "New" inspiration, but ultimately I've decided against it. Even if the house is not our new home and future, the search for it was most certainly a new learning experience for us. We will feel more confident in our continued house search next year.

For New and Architecture, here is Week 9's picture:

24 February 2013

Week 8: Lines (in) My View

52 Weeks Challenge

My picture for this week feels very un-creative to me. But you have to admit that there are an awful lot of lines to be seen here.

Project 52
My View

 While I only see this on the weekends, it is what gets me through the rest of the week. This picture could also be taken as a prophetic view of my future.

Week 7: Free

This blog has been deserted the last couple of weeks due to mass busy-ness. I started a weekend job at a local horse farm, and we've been preparing to move again. 

The gal in charge of the 52 Weeks challenge was having computer issues that caused us to miss the 7th week. :-(

Project 52 had an inspiration of "Free," meaning that we could feel free to capture whatever fell into our laps to photograph.

09 February 2013

Week 6: Fearless Motion

52 Weeks Challenge

While this isn't the crazy-active shot that I'd imagined getting, I do love the simple motion of this shot.

 Project 52 Challenge

Yonah realized recently that he is scared of heights. But when we went to the "big park", he insisted on climbing up all the climbing rocks. Why? Because he wanted to try the "jumping off thing" to see if he liked it or not.

And this week you get a bonus picture!

This was my initial plan for the Fearless shot. I decided against it because I was so excited to get a shot of Yonah. Between his camera shyness and his sisters' excitement to have their pictures taken, I don't get many pictures of him these days.

02 February 2013

Week 5: Busy Textures

I have been in a creative slump the past few weeks. Even the simple task of writing in my journal is unbearably difficult. It's been very discouraging.

But it was easier today, so maybe I'm starting to come out of it?

This week's inspirations were as follows:

52 Weeks Challenge

Project 52 Challenge

Lila's determination to be as big as her siblings keeps her very busy each day.

26 January 2013

Photo Challenges: Week 4

Once again, I was able to combine the two themes into one picture.

The themes were Shadows and Harsh

Even in the harshest times there is hope. For me, that hope is most easily found in a barn.

The picture was taken with my iPhone, so the quality is not as great. I really wish I had thought to throw my camera in the car.

21 January 2013

Photo Challenge: Week 3

52 Weeks Challenge

The kids enjoyed helping me to get this shot. We made finger paint and then made a big mess as we experimented with mixing colors to see what they made together.

Project 52 Challenge
Find the Beauty

I hate, hate, hate the extreme temperatures. (Which really explains why I love living in this state, doesn't it?) Lately we have experienced the coldest temperatures I ever remember living through. Single digits are absolutely not fun for me.

But when Kim told me I needed to grab my camera and get outside immediately, I definitely found something I can appreciate about being so close to 0° Fahrenheit. Talk about frost!

18 January 2013

Photo Challenges: Week 2

We've been busy lately.

Busy with kids, busy with horses, busy with recording songs.

Last week's photography themes were Daily and Love.

I combined them into one shot. Partially because I just love this picture, and partially because coming up with two separate ones that week was a very overwhelming thought.

Yonah loves learning to read just as much as I love teaching him.