A boy and his dog

Asher loves Mr. Mok.  And I think the feeling is mutual:

2015-11-28 Ash & Mok

(Note to Family:  these last two posts, I’ve been doing from my computer.  I usually use my phone, but I had some pictures from the large camera, so had to upload.  Just remember that if you click on a picture, you can link to it and download.  I know sometimes that helps if you’re printing for refrigerator pictures and such!  😉  Love you!)

Thanksgiving, Giving Thanks

2015-11-26 red leaves

Although different than some years, this Thanksgiving was one of the best.  My parents are on a cruise in Panama, so we headed up to Nana and Papa’s house to spend the holiday with them.  We didn’t want to make extra work, but since that is what we typically do, we went with it and they prepared all the food and we came, ate, and made a general mess of things.  What lucky great-grandparents they are!  (sarcasm hopefully detected).  But, I think fun was had by all…at least every one of our family did!

A few highlights for me of the day:

Playing Memory with Nana and Selah.

2015-11-26 Memory Game

I have to be honest, I’ve beat Selah ONCE at this game.  And I’m not exaggerating, and we’ve played quite a few times.  The girl has a memory of an elephant (isn’t that what they say?  Not sure how much an elephant remembers, but regardless, this 5 year old is GOOD.).  Needless to say, Nana was no more successful than me. Although, if you measure success in laughs, maybe we won.

Playing in Nana and Papa’s room with jewelry and flashlights.  Selah and Asher are pretty taken, as I used to be, with the ‘dress up’ jewelry collection that Nana has, so we always beeline for it when we’re there.  This visit was no different, and this picture reminded one of me long ago when I basically put on the entire ‘collection’ at once:

2015-11-26 Selah & jewelry

It seems Selah has a bit more discretion when it comes to wearing everything at the same time, although, it maybe just be that I didn’t quite capture the perfect moment.  Asher liked the jewelry as well, but he mostly played with the pins as animals, took out every single flashlight in the entire house (I kid you not – there were about 7 afterwards that Papa probably had to find a home for, and may not have even known he had), and also made repeated calls to “Grandma” on the phone:

2015-11-26 Ash Calls Gma

It’s funny, we don’t have a land line at our house, so Asher was fascinated by the phone.  He also did not get the concept that this was real, and he was upset I kept making him hang up.  So, we’re hoping no actual long distance calls were made, since we may not be invited back when they get the bill!

Another highlight was playing outside.  Not only was the fall foliage beautiful, but Nana would not be outdone by her great grandchildren, and took to ‘racing’ them.  We brought Asher’s bike, so he rode, while Nana sped around on her scooter, and Selah chose by foot (poor kid has a hard time riding her bike with the broken arm…which absolutely did not stop her).  Nana also gave lots of rides, letting Asher and Selah drive the scooter on her lap.  Brave woman right there.  I just love the look on all of their faces (I captured a few, but none as engrained as the beautiful picture in my mind), and even more vivid was the divine sound of laughter from all six of us through the day.

2015-11-26 fall day 2015-11-26 fall leaves 2015-11-26 Nana & Ash 2015-11-26 Nana & Selah 2015-11-26 Nana Races 2015-11-26 on the road again 2015-11-26 Selah & Nana drive2015-11-26 Ashy drives

It goes without saying that we are incredibly thankful for all of the blessings in our life.  Not a day goes by that I don’t realize what a gift we have been given in those around us.  But days like this are even more poignant reminders of how very thankful we are to have our family.  Of course we missed those not with us terribly, but this was one of those special holiday moments where we were just there – in the moment.  I mean, how often do you get to have a race where the participants are 80+ years apart?!

Safe to say the kids enjoyed the day too – they were still talking about it the day after.  Here are a few stray images I also loved from the day…

Selah jumping to pick fruit, not letting that arm stop her:  2015-11-26 Selah jumps

My two handsome boys:  2015-11-26 Daddy & Ash

Just a boy and his bike:  2015-11-26 Boy & his bike

These faces say it all:  2015-11-26 these faces

We were also very thankful to Papa who made a lot (and by a lot, I mean, all) of this day possible.  We even hesitated coming up because we just really didn’t want to be a burden to anyone, and a Thanksgiving meal isn’t exactly burden-free…but he made us feel like it was no problem at all, which it clearly wasn’t.  And I’m sure the kitchen wasn’t the only thing that needed cleaning after our crew left the building – if nothing else, the flashlights sure  needed to find their homes again, and likely the jewelry will be coming out of the woodwork in every room for a few months from now.  Sorry if you never recover much of your jewelry, Nana – or find it in places you never imagined!  But Nana and Papa, we sure hope you both had as great of a day as we did.  I pray some day my kids look back and remember how blessed they were to have such amazing role models and generations of blessing.  When we count ours, we sure do count you twice (& twice again).


Kelly Rae & family.

Catching up 

I’m almost to Thanksgiving posts, but wanted to catch up a few other picture groups before I moved on through the holidays.  

I just liked the lighting in these few pictures I took after church last Sunday outside of Blenders.  Talk about blue-eyed babies!  These are them! 😉

Selah’s been doing amazingly well with her arm.  She completely can write, draw, eat, and sometimes get dressed (depending on the clothes – obviously some are harder than others).  Kids are resilient and she’s no exception.  

And Mr. Asher has personality for days.  That kid sure lives up to his name (Hebrew word for ‘happy’ and ‘blessed’), and makes us all laugh daily!


My Superheroes

The superhero theme is big in our household.  In fact, these PJs are requested almost every night.  There’s a show on Disney called PJ Masks and the kiddos are obsessed with it. “PJ masks, we’re on our way! Into the night to save the day!”  Asher even knows every word to the theme song.  It’s been cold, but with Selah’s arm, we are on limited wardrobe, so tank top jammies it is:


   Cutest heroes around! 😉

Asher -isms 

Tonight at bedtime:

Asher:  Dear Jesus, thank you for pasta!  …and my cannon.  *follows with multiple cannon shooting sounds*.  Amen.

My disclaimer:  we have had neither pasta nor a cannon in our home anytime recently.  But pasta is covered very completely in prayer – he prays for it every night.  As for cannons, we’ll see if that’s a regular occurrence!

First Broken Bone

There’s lots of firsts that are fun to document.  Broken bone is not usually one of them.  But today, that was it.  So, not the best of firsts for my beautiful Selah, but here’s to Mommy hoping it is a first and a last!

 Selah’s arm took the brunt of a fall off the swings at school today.  Our tough girl didn’t even cry or let on how much she was hurting, but just asked the after school care program to call her mommy.  We happened to be almost in the parking lot, just having finished our first parent-teacher conference just minutes earlier.  When Daddy and I walked in, she melted and we knew it was more than a bump or bruise. 

Not to push my luck or minimize the experience, but I do feel blessed that we (1) have insurance!  I complain about the cost, but we are able to choose where we go and get good care for ourselves and our babies, which is so much better than some, I realize, (2) did not have to get surgery!  Her arm was pretty ‘displaced’ looking and weirdly swollen, and the pediatrician immediately sent us to a hand surgery center, so I wasn’t feeling great about the possibilities.  So, just a cast is seeming to be a somewhat ‘best case outcome’ when you’re looking at a broken arm, and (3) we have such great friends!  Selah literally was sobbing on the couch this evening with her arm throbbing, and a family we are friends with texted to see if they could come say hello to her…and lo and behold, the best medicine of all was friendship.  She lit up and even got up and played this evening with her friend Luke (she wasn’t able to walk or move prior). It was amazing, considering her state of borderline depression mere minutes prior.  She also received a ‘get well’ card from our neighbor, and a video message from her sweet kindergarten teacher and her daughters.  

The love my kids experience through our community is literally divine and we are thankful every day.  Now we’ll just pray for healing of her sweet right arm…and that it’s an isolated incident! 😉

8 years new 

Thanks to Grandma and Grandpa, Jesse and I were able to celebrate our 8th anniversary over a weekend.  Since one day our kiddos might actually come back to these posts, I thought I should include a few of these to show we actually did a few things without them every once in awhile! 

We spent the weekend going to a Rob Bell show in West Hollywood, then hiking to the Hollywood sign in the morning.  

The hike was a great 6 miles…although the weather was a bit hot.  I even had to take a picture to prove we did it in over one hundred degree heat! 

We also were able to greet Rob Bell briefly after the show, which could have been almost tailored for us – at least half his show was on the Hebrew word, ‘selah’!  What a sweet anniversary gift the message was.

It sounds cliche, but in our case it’s true…our marriage just keeps getting better.  It hasn’t been the easiest of 8 years, but I wouldn’t change a thing.  (Ok, maybe a few little things 😉, but you know, nothing major).  I’m looking forward to the next 8, and the 8 after that, and there’s no one I’d rather spend them with.

The Dino

Just found a few more sweet pictures of my little stegosaurus that I had to post:


Halloween Fun

Sorry so late, family!

 We’ve been busy, but I needed to go back to post because they were too cute to skip.  

We managed to carve pumpkins in the afternoon – lit up partially by birthday candles since we forgot an appropriate number of tea lights.  
Selah was already invited to a school friend’s party for potluck then trick-or-treating.  I only have one picture at the conclusion of the night while the girls were handing out candy because (1) the constant motion of the kids from hitting the ground to the end of the night and (2) the craziness of our neighborhood during Halloween.  Luckily Jesse followed the girls as they sprinted house to house, while Auntie Brooke and I coaxed Asher into visiting at least a half block of houses.

The three sweet amigos:


Asher actually had a mid-evening costume change, so he was two personas.  The dinosaur was the favorite, except the exceptionally warm weather made him freak out.  Lucky mom anticipated the meltdown by throwing in a spare ‘engineer’ backup costume.  Even with the cooler outfit, he wasn’t as into the trick-or-treating as much as Selah.

  Our sweet peacock:  
  We’re so blessed that Grandma makes our costumes, aren’t we?!?!   It was a big hit trick-or-treating and at the party.

We also had a blast at Selah’s school carnival, the Fall Festival.  Daddy had a game and other obligations, so lucky Auntie Brookie got to chase the kiddos around with me.  Quite the experience. 😉

Selah was Rapunzel for this event since I was worried the peacock costume might have a few feather casualties on the bounce houses.  A few pictures from before since it was pure chaos once we were there:  
All-in-all, one more holiday in the books, with happy kids!  Happy belated Halloween! 👻🎃