Friday, December 26, 2014

Cookie Baking

Yum! Oma is visiting for the holidays and made today cookie day!  Lots of little fingers put lots of sugar on lots of cookies--cheery and bright!

Opa played cards with the older boys teaching a new game.

Fun memories in the baking and making!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Parelli Level 1

This past week, we had a different kind of celebration! Because the lack of snow here in NH...we've been able to continue our horse program.

At our last lesson, the kids were tested and are able to complete all tasks in level 1 of our Natural Horsemanship program. It was exciting news!

Our Christmas Celebrations

Merry Christmas!  Today was a beautiful time of celebration and family time...a slow day...a good thing.

Michaela joined us after work this morning. We read from Luke, opened our gifts, and ate lots of yummy food.

The kids have spent their day building, playing games, reading and the older ones went to see their first movie in a long time--The Hobbit.

We are very grateful for this day. 

Happy Birthday Jesus!

Monday, December 8, 2014

My Hearty Kids

Today was cold...not as cold as our last lesson but still cold.

They were out there in the cold with their horses...brrr...what troopers they are!  They made some big strides today...I did the driving and they did EVERYTHING else!
So proud of them at their Parelli Play Day!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Turkey Day and Then Some

Our plans to visit family were delayed because of this...
A great big snow storm...heavy snow that came Wednesday and brought with it downed trees and power lines. We lost our power around 9 pm and had it back around 3 am. The snow stopped around them and we cleared the driveway and the barn area and hopped in the car.  On the way we picked up Jess and her friend Thanksgiving--a 42 pound turkey that was donated very graciously by friends of hers. And no...that is not a typo.

We met the our family at Cracker Barrell after 8+ hours in the road and had a delicious meal. We then headed back to my folks place for dessert.

Another exciting thing, we delivered a new puppy to my folks. Her name was Emily and she is a puppy of our dog Ellie who had been recently surrendered in Connecticut.  They were excited to meet her.
Emily looks so much like our Ellie. They are very much a like in their nature and it was fun to compare them.

Oh Saturday, we got together again at the Lowmans to celebrate. This is where Jess's friend, Thanksgiving, came into play... He cooked all night the night before and was tender and delicious. He was huge ...we had lots of meat for the crowd.

We traveled home on we drive north...despite many detours because of traffic--it was stunningly beautiful.  It was so good to be back home!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Eastern States Equine Affair

Last Friday, we headed to Springfield, MA  to the Big E to see Pat Parelli in action. He is the man who made natural horsemanship come alive for the average horse owner. He took all he learned through the natural horse greats and developed an incremental learning program.  Here he is working with an eleven year old girl and her pony to help her find the breaks in her pony. He approaches it a totally different way...that is why he is so good at what he does!

It was amazing at what he accomplished for his young girl and her pony in a short while with just simply repeating a few simple tasks till the pony got it.

A good read for a horse to know they are processing something is to give gem a break after a task and see if they lick their lips.  Sure thing every time!

We tracked him down at his booth when we were all finished to meet the man ourselves.  It was an awesome and inspiring day!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Adoption Celebration

Yesterday we ventured to State House for their annual Adoption Celebration in honor of November being National Adoption Month.  It was good to see the many faces that we know and have been on the same journey as well as new families who have stepped up to love kids in need.

We heard from the Govenor, the new director of DCYF, a ministry helping Foster kids out and a wonderful Foster mom speak about her journey.  It was cool to have Michaela join us too!  We then headed to Pizza Hut to celebrate with a pizza--yum!

        All of us on the steps of the state house in Concord.  Michaela took the picture.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Wood Days

We have been busy stacking 4 cords of wood in our new woodshed we built this summer. It's starting to get full just in time  for the cold that is suppose to roll in tonight.

We work 50 minutes and then break for a few minutes of fun before we head back to work.

New England is so seasonal and our lives are so connected to it. Fall brings putting up hay and wood for the long winter ahead. Running tank heaters to keep the horses water from freezing, preparing snow shovels, the snow blower and generator are too. Don't worry...we are also preparing the sleds for  the fun  snow ahead.

It is a busy time of year and we eagerly look ahead to te slower days of winter. But for now--back to work!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Last Night in Big Sandy

Our last night in Big Sandy, we had a huge bonfire where we made yummy s'mores and sang together. It was a very special evening as we looked around at the new friendships we had forged. Everyone had such a good time at the Academy and many plans were made for future trips and adventures.

We were impressed with the Alert men and the hard work and integrity they showed in their endeavors. It was good to hear the testimony of the leaders and their hearts to help dad lead their families and cast a vision.  We were challenged and encouraged...both good things.

The next morning after packing and a wrap up, we headed out for a 30+ hour drive back to New Hampshire. It was long and exhausting. We returned with renewed courage to dig into Alert and life following God.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Alert Tower

When you pull into the Alert campus you notice the climbing tower, even before the actual beautiful entrance. That tower is used for teaching climbing, high rescues and rappelling.
The tower ready for work.

Joe going off the high tower after doing several times at the lower level.

Brandon working down the tower cautiously.

Jason comes bounding down in his long legs.

Michael takes the plunge after much encouragement and was very glad her did.

Jumping Up and Down

Jelly stone campground where the Charles stayed had a giant pillow that the kids had great fun's easier to see it than explain it...

Tiger Creek

In Texas, on one of our free days, we visited Tiger Creek near Tyler. It is a sanctuary for large cats--Tigers, Cougars, leopards and lions. They were beautiful and magnificent.

We also got to visit with te added bonus.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Love in Action

Love...that strange amazing between this mama and daughter...amazing bond between this dad and between conquering all.

For the past 2 months, we have had a front row seat to see the Power of Love as the Lord slowly peeled back the layers to tear down the walls and close chapters to begin a new work. He healed old wounds and set her feet on new ground. New experiences, new challenges, digging into the truth...God is amazing in His work.

This new chapter begins and we were privileged to see the unspeakable joy.

Sweet memories....prayer warriors, horses and hay, the Deerfield Fair, the 250th celebration of Raymond, the beach, beautiful fall colors of NH, house church, Bible studies, short little walks that became amazingly long. We love you Sabrina and your sweet family.