Em's visit

Today, Emily came to the house for the first time. She took Theo and Rubin. I met Rubin for the first time. Theo and Zeek played very well, as always.

Zeek hated Rubin because he is a baby, as always. And Emily and I had a really good time together with our boys.

Rubin is stunning. Really something. He's adorable in his pictures, but MAN is he great live. Adorable, sweet, and something I can't quite put into words. Something older than us, maybe. Wise, or kind of like Will from across the street. You can just see what kind of stellar grown men they will be. They almost are, already somehow.

Anyway, I forget what a one year old is like. Not to mention this one walks all over the place like he's been doing it for years.

It was a good visit. And watching Zeek with Theo, I felt sorry for about the thousandth time in the past 2.5 years, incredibly sorry that my son doesn't have a sibling. I'm beginning to wonder if this feeling will ever go away. It seems like the farther away I get from making it possible in ages anyway, the worse I feel.
God guide us. And heal us. And GIVE us the desires of Your heart for our lives and family.

Cute stuff

Me: Zeek, why do you call it a "glub"
Zeek: Cuz it has fingers

We were home from the grocery store and I was hauling in groceries. Each time I passed Zeek I saw that he was struggling with the items he insisted on bringing in from the car all in one trip. Finally, he says to me in exasperation,
"don’t you know you’re supposed to help your kid out a little?"

"I’m apple salad... Letuce salad... Cilantro salad!"

Greg: dude your car’s faster than mine. That’s not fair.
Zeek: cuz I’m givin’ mine the juice!


amber and hudson time

Amber and Hudson came from Florida for a visit. Amber likes to come to Wisconsin during autumn because she likes the leaves changing colors and falling (something they don't see much of where they live). This was the second time she has been here with us and the first time that she took someone with her.

Hudson is her youngest child who was four while they were here and turned five years old yesterday. Zeek really liked having him here. We could tell he was a little confused, possibly wondering if Hudson was a new foster child who would be staying when his mother left for home. But once we cleared that up for him, he LOVED having Hudson around.

They played legos, made playdough and lost themselves in it for hours, raced cars, explored the land, jumped in leaves, took a walk with us, took turns on the drums and guitar, watched Kipper, and just all around had a good time together. It was nice.

We are looking forward to seeing Hudson again when Amber comes back!
Zeek even said, the morning they flew home, that he would have liked for Hudson to live with us. :)


the cheshire cat

Today was the production of Zeek's first play!!!
He has been going to practice every week on Thursday mornings for six weeks, and today was the big show.

He had a few roles, just like everyone else in the play. His favorite being the Cheshire Cat. He also played tweedledum and card #2.

During practices the kids made their own props. the were so cute. :)

Zeek practiced his lines almost every day at home. He was SO good at them.
I tried to prepare him for "the audience", but there was really no way around the initial shock.
After his first scene (during which he really didn't say his parts) he did better and better.

Greg, Nanna, and Puppa came to watch the play, too. Greg and I gave Zeek a whole bag of Skittles and a new monster truck hot wheel.
I videotaped the show and of course, took photos.

We are SO proud of him. He was such a big boy. He did so well. We'll see if he wants to do a play again in the future. It was so good for him on so many levels.


a rough one

Addition: not because I can't have a bad day, because I can. And do. But because I want to remember this hope. Today didn't end up being so bad after all. Zeek and I read a lot, then we did A LOT of art:

He played with playdough while I made porcupine meatballs for dinner. During which time this occurred; 
Zeek: what's all the white stuff in these?
Me: that's rice in the meatballs.
Greg: they're called porcupine meatballs.
a few minutes later Zeek has a mouthful of meatball, a stink face, and he says in a disgruntled voice: 

Zeek at very well (even his broccoli) and after dinner we all snuggled on the couch toggling tv shows between monster trucks and the sandwich show. This is the first time Zeek has watch big people shows with us for any period of time. We usually play with him until bedtime, but Greg wasn't feeling great. 

I read BabyZeek.com to Zeek as he drifted off, and I'm left here beside him in his bed with the snoring dog and my laptop. 
just wanted to add...it's really not so bad after all. :)


Today, I'm being kind of a loser. I really have very little motivation. I'm not handling things well. I'm letting Zeek go on cruise control. I'm questioning all my decisions and plans. I'm watching too much TV, overeating, and checking nothing on the computer too often.

I know that if I spend some time with God I'll be better off... if I go do some yard work and burn something or take a walk, I'll feel a little lighter... if I make some cookies and bring them over to Teri's I'll come out my funk... but I'm kind of a poop right now, so I don't want to. :(

It sucks, what a temperamental balance I have to work with. One day I'm fine and the next I'm a confused jumble.
And which is real? How sure I am on a good day, or how sure I am I'm all wrong on a bad day? because it sure does feel like the latter.



it's not WHAT you know, it's WHO you know...

And it doesn't hurt that I happen to have a famous photographer for a best friend. :)
Today, Pam took our family photos for us.

The weather was perfect. The adventure was memorable. And I know that the photos will be awesome!

We did a little barn break-in and some light trespassing, but all in all we behaved ourselves. Zeek was good. Greg was great. I tried not to provide click after click of mama scolding her boys how to look, stand, act, smile... :) We'll see how it went.

It was fun and interesting to be on the other end of the lens. We've never had a family shoot before, and it was cool to have the client point-of-view for a change.
Surprisingly, I'm feeling a lot less intimidated about being "the photographer". And my goal is to learn how to take photos as quickly and sufficiently as Pam. I tend sit at each scene too long changing my camera settings all around while I'm shooting. She was like click, click, click, click, click, NEXT!
It was good.

I can't wait to see what she got and get that Christmas card going! :)


zeek stuff

Zeek: Mom? did you know that i just talked to God a little?
Me: what did you say?
Zeek: I asked Him to get rid of the needle guy so if i need a needle (shot) he won't be there"

“Mom, I’m playing a video game, and I need something quick! 
Some fruit snacks, 
a cut up banana, 
some grapes 
and...a pear.” 
(he hands me a little barney bowl. 

“I think we should have lunch,
then media time, then school work.”

"I hope I have time to play with daddy when he gets home
and play with Xbox."


i can not believe that this is my life. my family. my home. my God, You are so good to me.

little painter

We've really been desperate for a piece of modern abstract art in the living room above the couch. I've been slacking because of cost and concern about transporting the size canvas we would need.

Well, last week I realized that Zeek loves to paint (what kid doesn't), we have a lot of canvas material that I bought on sale a couple of years ago, and a bunch of unused window screens in the basement storage.

Put 'em all together and when do you get?

eager painter

hard working

finishing touches

awesome modern art

When he discovered that he'd made a heart shape (green in the lower right corner) he painted it in again and again. Then he said, "this is a heart for daddy. It's so he knows I'm loving him."

egg coloring...a first?

I'm sure babyzeek.com could confirm whether or not this is the first time Zeek has ever colored eggs. I do think it is, but I'm not positive. Either way, it was fun. And I'm always saying that there's no reason we shouldn't do the fun things that we do (or don't do) for holidays anytime of year. :)

Gra was here for this activity, too. She flew in and surprised us for Zeek's birthday!

And when we were all done, we cracked them out and ate them up. Zeek loved them! :)


partridge lane

"Whoa! Look at this bad boy!"

One year ago today, we saw this house for the first time.

I stood in the backyard and heard God tell me this was our house (even though it to took hours for that to settle in as Truth for me).

October 11th will always be that day to me. When all the crazy dreams and longings I had about where I belonged on this earth came crashing into my reality, and I learned that He does put things on our hearts.

I discovered that He does fulfill all the desires therein.

And I found that He knows something special about us and this life that we can't even conceive of yet.

For now, I'm just enjoying what is. What is SO splendidly wonder-filled and dream-like in our life.

Thank You, God.
i am Yours.


another one

"Mom, I know why God didn't give you as much energy as me. Because you don't go to sleep when little boys go to sleep."

Today was so good. Again.

Jay slept over. and I feel like something has clicked back into place with her in our lives. Like it's high time that I make a better point of her being a part of us. It was so good to see and hear her and Zeek together. They are so close.
We agreed with Julie and Kevin at the end of her visit that from now on we will pick her up from school every other Friday so she can sleep over and spend those Saturdays with us. She asked us by the fire this afternoon, and it couldn't have been at a better time.

This morning I took Zeek and Jay to a couple of pumpkin places. The first one was a bust, not to mention it was FREEZING. The second hit the jackpot. SO cute and inexpensive and fun. We enjoyed it, had cookies and  juice, and i bought a pumpkin muffin i can't wait to enjoy during some Mama time, soon! :)


When we came back home Greg wanted to have a big fire. So we headed back outside. Jay and I picked up all the sticks in the yard- the part we maintain anyway. She was SO much help.

It's so funny how much I hated picking up sticks for my parents when I was a kid. And we didn't even live in the woods! Now it is my favorite thing to do. It's so refreshing. The woods, the exercise, sunshine, endorphins, feeling of accomplishment, and fire. What could be better?

After we all played outside and enjoyed the fire Jay went home and Zeek and I went across the street to Teri's and Bill's to visit the cats and Henry.
We had a wonderful visit there, as always. They sent us home with pears from their land. They are always giving us things and I need to think of something I can do for her in return. She is really so so sweet. We're blessed to have them for neighbors.

I put the pumpkins and corn stalks out in the front yard, photographed a little, and headed in to make pear sauce with Zeek. His idea. :)

I cleaned up, cooked a Digorno pizza and watched 90210 while Zeek ate and played Booah an Kawala. He was missing them after such an action packed day.

Now,  I am ready to read him to sleep and hit the hay myself. I could really use the extra energy. ;)


all i need

"They said, united states of america. That’s where I live. I’m grateful to know where I live! Awesome!"
I've often described our new home as not mine, needing to be empty and free of belongings for a time, calling to minimalism... the place in which I've toggled mornings between being awe struck by the fulfillment of God's incredible Promise and what is to come, and wondering if this is the day we pack our bags, clean the rental resort, and head back to our real place.      

During these first several months we've lived here I have felt God making it very clear that this place is His.
For this reason I just couldn't/didn't/wouldn't put my mark on it. Keeping it simple and almost untouched was exactly what I've wanted and needed since we set foot in the door.

Today is different.
Today, I feel like an new season of our lives has begun (PRAISE GOD) and it is time. It's time to make our mark and put our hearts into warming our home up.
Today I have begun the work of making something here. Making my home of this place. Making it us.
And it feel so good.

Thank you, Father, for Your guidance and faithfulness. For showing me just what I was doing in my heart being discontent with ALL that you have Blessed me with...wanting more than the sweet honey of your manna each day.
And thank You for challenging me to rise up and adhere myself to a new standard. To LIVE again.
I love You.


about abundance

"Hi Mom, I was actually spending some time up there with Jesus. I was looking at the book."

This is the first entry I am making to this place. This documentation/creative outlet/memory saving spot that I am making for us again. anew.

I've been spending some time looking back at babyzeek.com, which I stopped writing over a year ago. And I'm so blessed that we have something like that. All the memories and amazing photos and words that capture just who we were and what was happening those first three years of Zeek's life. The adorable things he said, our then home, messes and neat-nesses, ideas, the events, the people and the stories... I love it all so much.

I am pleased to be able to get back to creating the same sort of thing outside the realm of "BLOG" or any other type of stage.
Just for us. This secret place.

And He assured me in this, 

"Jesus said, 'I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." John10:10
and so we will.