Monday, July 17, 2017

Reconciling Disappointments

2016 was a hard year.  I entered 2017 very hopeful that this year would be better, much better.  I remember having a heart to heart with God as 2017 started.  Peter and I are both extremely goal oriented and love to strive towards our goals.  I remember approaching this question.  What are some things that seem humanly impossible, but with God could happen this year?  I remember quickly  jotting down some high hopes. I knew they were things He could accomplish in our lives.  I really hoped he would.

Here we are 7 months into this year, and my hopes and dreams have not gone quite as expected.  In fact most have ended in pretty big disappointment.  Typically when I lay my requests before God, I end that prayer with "not my will but yours be done."  I've tried in my heart to truly believe those words,  but as more time passes and it seems my requests have been ignored, I've began to see that maybe I haven't really meant that part of the prayer.

It has grown heavy on my heart, but this past week or so the theme of articles and Bible study and even our church sermon have been so applicable to this part of my life.  Do I want to settle for my desires or do I want to trust God that his way and his plans are better than mine? God has never let me down and yet I still have moments where I doubt Him.  Through and through, there are times He gives me the very thing I desired. But even when His plan doesn't look the way mine did, His way was better.  So why do I doubt his plan for my life this year?

It's funny the amount of time we spend stressing about things. It seriously can make us goal oriented folks crazy. I just wish I came to the conclusion earlier that I don't need to stress. I remember the books awhile back Don't Sweat The Small Stuff And It's All Small Stuff.  I spend so much time stressing about that worst case scenario, and then when the worst case happens (as it has seemed to do often lately) guess what?  We come out on the other side just fine.  It's okay when things don't go my way.

I've learned a lot of lessons, it may take me some time unfortunately as I am a wee bit stubborn, but nonetheless lessons are being learned.  I have learned I need to be content where we are in life.  I need to stop focusing so much on my life goals and enjoy this journey and where we are in this moment.  I need always remember to count my blessings.  Nothing beats disappointment down faster than praising God for all the blessings He has given and He has provided for in my life.  It keeps it all in real perspective.  I need to remember how good we have it.

I have no idea what the remainder of 2017 holds for us.  I've finally come to realize that God doesn't owe me anything. He doesn't have to make a single one of MY dreams for the year come true.  My goal is to praise Him and draw closer to Him no matter whether the remainder holds valleys or mountain tops.  I trust Him.  I know that through Him, whenever the time is just right, whatever He has for us is going to be good! He gives good gifts.  Even when I can't see what lies ahead, He reminds me "Be still and know."  So I will continue to strive to be better. Be better at being still and waiting. Not letting my mind wander but keep my eyes focused right on Him no matter what my greatest fears may be.  He is always good.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Summer Phone Dump

Time for another phone dump, and it's a big one and the pictures are a little bit mixed up! 



We ended our spring sports and activities with awana awards and a little backyard smore time. 







We have spent countless hours in the yard sprucing it up. Still a long list to go, but it's looking so much better!  




Finally got Eli to take at least one picture in his cap and gown. 


Dentist appointments for all the kids at the same time! Bina still wants her daddy with her.  LB had her first visit and was a champ, all ready to go! 




We were able to attend a bbq with an amazing pool with a view! 



Have I mentioned yard work?


Peter had a quick little trip he went on, and my mom took the boys for a sleepover which left us girls with a whole fun day to ourselves of girl time! 


Complete with a spa night for the little ladies



Something big was going down in the backyard. 


Peter, my dad and brother and uncle, and his dad and brother all went on an ocean fishing trip. They limited out super fast!  


Summer finally showed up, fortunately it hasn't been as relentless as last year! 





Spring sports wrapped up. Eli was a lot of fun (for a t-ball player) to watch! 


My littles (and hubby) made me the best Mother's Day Brunch! 


Peter and I also partook in another fun little datebox



The kids have been learning how to rollerskate



The garden is producing! 


Thanks to Prime Day, we picked up a couple DNA tests. Always fun to learn a bit more about adopted kiddos. 



We've been trying to get more involved at church and now that we have two in the elementary class it is easier. They had a blast at a water wars event! 




They act like they don't like each other, but they might just a little bit




School experiments! 


This was a unique moment in time with these two, but Eli loves head rubs and back rubs! 


Starting to pull some weight around here! 


Pouty 


Lots and lots of smores this summer! 


Every weekend through berry season you can find us at the berry patch! 


And we find lots in our own backyard too 


For the 4th of July, we went out fishing with the boys





Another big project around the firepit (when it was 100 degrees out there) but I am so happy with how it looks! 



Sometimes we even sneak out there after the kids go to bed just to chat and enjoy the peaceful evening! 





Peter got a really great Father's Day present 



More time at the berry patch 



Summer fun, this is what it is about! 


More projects (even working on Father's Day I might add) 


Father's Day, we all love this guy! 


A little  Kindergarten graduation party for Eli! 


All he wanted was a little family baseball game 


And lots and lots of chocolate desserts 


Garden has given us lots of yummy food 


I've been trying to expand my recipe box! Some Gnocci with bacon, fresh garden peas, and a Parmesan sauce!


Summer Reading Program! 


Peter took the boys fishing for Father's Day. Mal caught a massive bass! 


Learned a fun magic trick with one of our datebox nights, had to share it with the kids the next day! 



Another new recipe and a family favorite, pork wellington! 


Fun watching my girls become besties too! 



This summer has been pretty low key but we've been loving the family time we've had so far! Even though things get busy here for the next couple of weeks, we hope the good and simple days will continue!