Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
1 Corinthians 3:17

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Graduation Weekend!

The words still sound a little funny in my head, and maybe they taste a bit sour too: I am the mother of a high school graduate.

I AM THE MOTHER OF A HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATE.

Not sure how I feel about all this, and in some ways, it's harder than I thought it would be. But our weekend was a great one! I'm very thankful.

The weather was just perfect, gorgeous and sunny, not overly humid or thick. I know there's absolutely nothing you can do about weather except to make the most if it when it isn't agreeable, and to be exceedingly grateful when it is. The plan for the ceremony was for me to arrive early, save a row of seats, and then all the guys would join us. Well, Isabelle and I were there nearly an hour early and it was already PACKED. We had to park far away, so it took a bit to walk down to the school, and by the time we made it inside, I got a little panicky because so many seats were already filled or reserved. Ethan's girlfriend actually had saved us an entire row since she'd been there with the NHS helping to set up, and I was really glad for it!

The ceremony was great but it was SO long. Too long. Over two hours, and this is a small school. Barely a hundred seniors graduating. There were two speeches that were 25 minutes long! 25 minutes!!! Several others were almost as long winded- and they were good, they really were, but they should have been condensed. I'd been worried about how Levi would handle it, and he was a champ. I was super proud of him. There were kids melting down all around us, which should have been a sign to the speakers, haha, but he held it together so, so well. I did end up taking him into the hallway to cradle him in my arms as they finished up with the diplomas, and it was utter chaos as soon as everyone started filing out into the hall where we were. I hate crowds, like really hate crowds, and all I wanted was a family picture...but I couldn't find my family, so my heart was already pounding and anxious at this point.

I'm going to call this a successful shot, though I wish my husband had gotten the memo that the graduate is supposed to be front and center.



I'm including this one because I think one day I will look back on it and smile and not notice all my flaws as much as I do right now. Plus I'm all puffy from crying. I mean, I'm not crying, you're crying.


By the time we returned home, it was still nice and sunny, but the wind had picked up and had blown away nearly every sign I'd put up (when it was perfectly still earlier in the morning). I tried to handle it all with grace, but I've got to be honest and say that my nerves were shot and I was getting close to losing my mind a couple of times. I did the best I could, and everyone was really kind to say afterwards that they had a great time and that it all looked so festive.

You can see the poor dog-eared corner because it kept blowing over, and some of the other things wouldn't stay in place, but I thought this simple table looked nice. He received a lot of recognition and awards this year, and I didn't even include any from years' past. I'm really proud of him- he's such a wonderful guy, he really is! The grey book on the left was a real labor of love, partly because I can be indecisive but mostly because I just wanted it to be perfect. It's a photo book from Shutterfly filled with special moments and memories, and I hope it encourages him and reminds him of how much we love him when he leaves in the fall.


This party will definitely go down as the one least photographed, ha! I was too busy hosting and chatting and just having fun, so that's the best reason, right?





It got so hot, and since the weather looked good, we decided we wouldn't set up the big tent we'd purchased, so the table was for sure a hot spot. We told everyone to feel free to move their chairs to the shade, and they did. :)



Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Graduation Week!

Here we are. Graduation week. Honestly, I didn't think I would struggle with it, at least not very much, but I am. It feels much more like an ending than a beginning, and that has been a really difficult place to be. Plus the stress of planning a big party...argh! So basically I'm one giant raw nerve about now, ha.

...It's now two days later and I STILL can't put my thoughts in any reasonable format, so with that, I'm just going to end here. And I'm going to pour my little heart into being the best, most enthusiastic, fun-loving Mom I can for this momentous last week of high school with my boy. I'll be back soon with more details and hopefully some great pictures and tales to tell. Have the best week!

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

What's Up Wednesday :: May 2018

Hi friends! I haven't joined in a What's Up Wednesday with Shay , Mel and Sheaffer for a long time, so here ya go. Can't wait to read what's been up with YOU. :)



Even though we've got three full weeks left of school, summer snacks are on repeat over here!


The three below are in this post: Favorite Summer Snacks




This time of year always makes me a bit nostalgic, too. It makes me think about when the kids were little, and all the fun things we did. I really miss those carefree days!



Here is a post with a big round up of ideas and links to have fun this summer with little kids AND bigger kids:

We've had recitals and concerts and meetings and lots of this and that lately. Isabelle did a great job in chorus and playing the piano! I've been taking lots of long walks with Levi and meeting friends at the park to play. Then it was Senior Prom and gearing up for all the end of year festivities. I'm overwhelmed but excited.




Try keeping this one entertained throughout a very loooong recital! Whew!


 Here's the full post if you want to see more pictures- her gown is GORGEOUS!!

I'm loving all the time we get to spend outside now. It was such a long winter that it still feels SO good to just be outside again and see color. And I love how our landscaping is coming together! Every time I walk out and see how our plants and shrubs are growing, I just smile. It's been a lot of hard work, and we still don't have much actual grass- that's the last thing we'll be working on, but at least weeds are green, right?- but it looks so pretty and I just love it. 

The Columbine here just got added- aren't they the neatest flowers?! I'm going to do a full landscaping post soon, so check back!

And Isabelle discovered these babies by the pool! We have another family near our garage.

This corner is by our garage...it's really shaping up this year!



I'm dreading bills. Life with five kids is not for the faint of heart, ha. #truth #reallife

We've been working on being more intentional in our marriage this month, making time for one another in special ways, and having FUN. Marriage is hard, life is hard, raising teenagers and tweens and toddlers is HARD, and it's so easy to get swept up in all that hard stuff and before you know it, you kind of forget how to relax, laugh and just have some fun. And take-out. You can never go wrong with take-out and a movie.


For Rose and Ruffle, I've been a busy bee working on summer things. You can visit the shop using the link on the side bar or click here. I LOVE making sets for sisters, so if you see something you like, let me know!









Until last weekend, I'd felt like pretty much the ONLY person in the world who hadn't seen The Greatest Showman. And then to top it off, I didn't like it. I know, I know. So anyway, I watched it with Isabelle over the holiday weekend and liked it much better. Go figure...

I've been reading some YA novels for fun, okay, so it was one, and the rest are parenting books, Christian living books, and devotionals. I try to read more for fun but I always end up going back to my practical, driven ways. Ugh. ha ha

Still listening to that soundtrack, along with the rest of the world. And ColdPlay- I've been on a huge ColdPlay kick these days. When I get moody thinking ahead to how our life is going to change when Ethan leaves for college in the fall, that music is a good fit, ha.

Soon enough it will be swimsuits and cover ups all day long, but for now I've been living in dresses or denim shorts with cute tops. Our mornings are still quite chilly, so I start the day with a light sweater or cardi.






And for the record, no, I am not expecting another baby- I don't know why that dress is looking like that! Oops!

Oh yeah, and outfits like these. :)


Hopefully this weekend will be full of swimming and BBQing, but it's most likely going to become party prep for me- so many details!!!

And then the first week of June will be Ethan's last week ever of high school. It feels so surreal. I mean, wasn't I just graduating from high school like a couple years ago? There are awards ceremonies for him and Jonah, other special events, Bill's birthday, and then graduation. Jam-packed for sure!

Favorite summer salad?
Easy!


And fruit salad of course! I can never get enough fresh fruit in the summertime. 

Thanks for reading! Hope you found some inspiration...have a super rest of the week. :)

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