A little throwback to when we tried to get a photo of all the grandkids for my parents for Christmas.


Baby Cousin Samantha was having NONE.OF.IT.

(Kate was underwhelmed as well, obviously)


Still cute though.

Menu Plan Monday



Monday: Chili fries and a salad

Tuesday: Mustardy Pork Chops , salad, rice

Wednesday: Fresh Tomato Pasta Toss, french bread

Thursday: Black bean soup (from the freezer)

Friday: Pizza


Dinner, A Love Story

If you only ever buy one more cookbook, buy this one!

You won’t find anything out of the ordinary or super exotic. On Wednesday we had her meatloaf recipe, minus the spinach stuffing, because there are still children in this house and I just couldn’t deal with it on a Wednesday, and it was amazing. Was it the bacon? The extra tablespoon of ketchup? The balance of her ingredients? I don’t know, but it was an amazing meatloaf, and I’ve made many.

My family wants me to buy the rest of her books too, because we’ve all been so happy.

I don’t know Jenny, and probably never will. I just had to share a book that has had so much great success in our house.






It was staff photo day, and I can’t for the life of me remember what month this was taken in. I think it was Juneish 2016.  We had most of the children’s home staff present that day, not an easy feat with all the crazy schedules. House parents, administrative team, legal team, and missionary staff.



This was a few years back, so some faces have changed, and different roles have been taken. The memories are still sweet though, and fun to look back on.



To learn more about Serving Paraguay and Hogar El Camino, click here. 

Menu Monday

Monday is known as my Introverting Day. We have a slow paced school morning, and the only errand is grocery shopping which Brian does on his way back from teaching Bible.

I get to stay home and make menu plans in my pajamas, while recharging my batteries from all the “extroverting”  (I think I made that word up) that happens on weekends.

I love my weekends with all my different circles of friends, we are so blessed! But I also love my quiet Mondays with stacks of cookbooks, bowls of cereal, PBS cartoons, and “slow school.”

Here’s what we’re eating this week:


Pizza (I make a big batch of dough, and store it in the fridge for when I need it)                    Chili Dogs                                                                                                                                                  Sandwiches (x2)                                                                                                                                      Popcorn and fruit                                                                                                                                    Hummus and veggie sticks with crackers (I am on a hummus kick lately, it freezes beautifully!)                                                                                                                                             Leftovers


Mon. – Pork and Salsa Verde  (I think I will tweak this to use my Instant Pot)

Tue. – Black Bean Burritos

Wed. – Summer Garden Pasta

Thu. – Guiso de Arroz (I am usually gone all day Thursdays, so it’s Brian’s night to cook, and this is such an easy one we can both make it in our sleep)

Fri. – Homemade Pizza (A Friday night tradition, often joined by friends for this one. It’s kind of famous.)

Sat. – Israeli Salad over Hummus (There I go with the hummus again)

Sun. – Potluck “merienda” (snack) with our Young Marrieds community group from church

And now to write the grocery list!


Wedding Week

My youngest sister, Jayde, got married on March 3rd. It was a destination wedding in the fun city of Encarnacion. I looooove that city now, with it’s clean streets, family fun activities and large riverwalk.

The wedding was held at night, and was Disney themed because what the Bride wants, the Bride gets.  🙂

Katherine was dressed up as a Elsa, from Frozen, on Elsa’s Coronation Day, not on Elsa Sings Let It Go Day. There is a difference.DSC_0180

Lexi was a very sweet, and slightly mischievous, Rapunzel. It works for her.DSC_0176

Elena was Belle (also a book lover) and Abbie was the beautiful Cinderella. They had a blast dressing up as their favorite princesses. DSC_0171

The house we rented for the week happened to have a beauty salon on the first floor. It was so easy to have everyone’s hair and makeup done without leaving the house. You can only imagine how many times the chair with attached sink got used with a house full of  women. DSC_0155Baby Cousin Samantha decided that if the bigger girls can walk, so can she. And so she did. (Her mother reports that Samantha has not stopped walking since.)DSC_0150
No Disney wedding is complete without Minnie Mouse. This isn’t just any old Minnie Mouse, it is THE stuffed Minnie Mouse that was essentially another sister as Jayde never left the house without her during our childhood. DSC_0145

Is there anything happier than seeing drippy swimsuits flung across a railing, or chairs, or stairs in preparation for the next dip in the pool? I don’t think there is. DSC_0100

Where I go on and on about nothing.



Did I not blog once in February? I can’t even remember. I did get a bad stomach bug in February, no fun, but I lost a few pounds. Thanks, Mr. Stomach Bug!

February is always a struggle for me. I’ve reached my limit with the heat..the heat…and the constant HEAT.  Pretty sure I’ve blogged about my dislike of February, so I won’t go on about that.

Have you read A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles? I just started it last night and can’t put it down. The laundry and dishes are piling up. Someone help me. I also read Lots of Candles and Plenty of Cake by Anna Quindlen. I thought it was a touching, and funny. She writes about motherhood and getting older, all in a very intelligent and gentle way.  I have added several of her other books to my Must Read list.

We took a trip to Encarnacion for my sister’s wedding (more pictures to come!) and we had a great week with family.

Back home and it’s back to school, work and life stuff. But, hey, it’s not February anymore, so bring it on! I’m ready now!

(I also turned 33 years old…or is it 34? 32? I never can remember.)


…no time to blog.

I’m feeding an army.

The puking

I spent Sunday night and early Monday morning with Kate who was throwing up all night long. She is better now, it was a quick bug, but it did make for a tired mom on Monday.

We did the basics in school, skipped gym time, managed to get groceries done (yay for superhero husbands) and had visitors over who played with the dog and jumped with the girls.

I had to let our girls know about one of their friends who will be moving soon and so began the tears. Pray for their little missionary kid hearts and all the goodbyes they often have to say.

Daddy bought them pizza and we all curled up on the couch for a family movie. It cheered them up, the day ended, and I finally got a full nights sleep.

I hope your Monday involved less puke than mine did!

Birthday cake for breakfast.

Years ago, I would go to the gym every morning for my spinning class. I remember once I blogged about having a birthday party at the gym and eating cake for breakfast. Now, years later, I have rejoined the same gym, different instructor, different group of people, but there was still birthday cake for breakfast! Happy birthday to my spinning instructor, Lorena, and no, I did not have cake! Today is Kate’s birthday and I am saving the calories for my homemade chocolate beet cake (recipe later).