Thursday, June 30, 2011

Josefina Camp!

My sister and I have done Summer Camps for sweet little girls for years. This year I was asked to do one in Missouri. This was planned before I called this amazing place my real home. I even got to be in Missouri and talk about camp with Aunt Shauna. I can see her big, bright smile thinking about how much fun the girlies would have with us. She was so great about sharing joys and plans with. I hold that as a very special trip, and talking together as one of the best moments. Oh, I miss her. I wish that we could have shared this with her, but I am happy that we were able to share it with her little princess. 

Summer Camp fun~ American Girl Style!

Josefina Camp!!
Playing Rainbow Tag-- That's "my" awesome house in the background! YES! I live in a YELLOW house! How perfect is that?!
7 little Josefinas and 3 big ones! :)
Such a pair of cuties! McKenna's face makes my heart sooo happy!
Cooking in the most beautiful kitchen ever!
Abby reading to our girls!
Sewing pouches like Josefina's...
7 little Josefinas! =D
Playing! Oh! I love playing! And this is one of my favoirte games-- Little Blind Hen!
Playing the flower game-- which we always play with a ring! hee hee And which brings on LOTS of fits of giggles!!
Our 10-year-old birthday girlie!!
Beautiful outfits made by Alyssa McAfee (Who is talented beyong all reason!:D)

My Missouri Sisters! They made this camp great! And are they not just the most lovely girls you've ever seen!? And they are just as sweet, kind, funny, and Christ-like as they are beautiful!

The camp was perfect. Abby and Candice were great. The girls were super sweet and fun to be with. Their giggles and happiness made every moment wonderful for us big girls. We each enjoyed the time together. They are always such great teaching times… for all involved—but it’s such a big responsibility, too. These young sweethearts look up to us with big, trusting eyes. We spend hours and hours together. We could hurt or help these little ladies so easier. It is a very clear reminder that life is about living for God every minute and being the best example that we can be to everyone we are with. These darling little girls are all headed in the right direction. It is such a blessing to be with Christian families. How happy these past couple days were… the cooking, the reading, the running, the playing games, the singing, the smiling, the painting, the sewing, the memory-making… *happpppy sigh* And to be at home with my Hecks! I loved being here. Having our “mom” around and my “brothers.” They looked in on what we were doing and shared some of the fun and all of the snacks! They shared the house with all of us crazy, happy, laughy, busy girls. It was fun, fun, fun!

Missing my Alyssa and Christina, though. We have so many shared memories from summer camps from the past several years. They are both soooo good at camps. Alyssa can do anything! Christina is so funny! All our little girls in GA are as sweet as can be… such a blessing to have “sisters” and “little girls” everywhere. Love you girls… J Y’all make life soooooooo sweet!

Friday, June 24, 2011

My sweet room!

My favorite thing about my room!

My very comfy bed!

 My favorite books and movies are in there... Isn't it adorable?!

My beautiful dresser...

My cool earring tree!

The awesome extra bed for my guests-- you are all welcome! :D

My well-traveled and well-loved friends! :) 

Right side of my window... LOVE the ledge! 

 Left side of my ledge... =) =)

 The charming end of my bed!

My closet of rainbow clothes and big picture of my friends! 

Best purse in the whole world! Doesn't it look cute with my bed?!

Isn't it the sweetest?!

From my 2nd mom. One of my favorite things. We have HOPE in Christ-- the wonderful hope that we will be with Aunt Shauna again one day if we live for God! 

 I read this every day. I haven't forgotten. I love you, Miss Cindy! <3 

Love these things-- and those girls! See my beautiful sisters?!

 My neat rug!

Have I mentioned that I LOVE this part of my room!? :) 

Isn't it one of the sweetest rooms you've ever seen!? It makes me super happy! I love living in this house. But really, none of this "stuff" is what makes this place so wonderful. It's the godly people that I live with that make this place home! I'll share more pics of them soon... it's harder to do pics of them than of my room! :D

I am thankful to each of you for your amazing support and love on this new journey of mine. I need it. This is not a trip that I could, or would ever want to, take alone. Prayers for each of you, my friends. 

Love you all! <3

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Birthday Girl!

First, the birthday party pictures from Saturday! 

 Carter checkin' out the goodies at the birthday party...

 Sweets! :)

 Amazing tasting and looking cake by Aunt Chas!

 In honor of three sweet, beautiful, funny, remarkable girlies!

 Everything, every little detail, was just right about the party... but it was all so hard without Aunt Shauna there to enjoy it that much more and make every smile and laugh. She would have loved it! 

Sweet Kenna Girl! <3

Dear McKenna Anne,

In just a few short weeks you have become a very big part of my life. I love to be with you. Thank you for all that you have already taught me. You lead me on to the hope of Heaven and the goal of eternal life more than anyone ever has. You are bright—you remember so much and have such a craving to learn. You have a mind of your own, a willingness to help, and a tender heart for those who are hurting around you.

It makes me so happy to listen to you imagine and play. You love to do stuff on your own, you love to play with just Carter, and you love it when it’s all three of us. Not to mention when friends come over! Oh, how much fun we have. You are the most outgoing child I’ve ever met, and I love. love. love it. Don’t change that. You are genuine and people love you.

When you look at me with those blue eyes and smile real big, you look just like Mommy. When you laugh really hard and fall over on the couch, you make me think of Mommy. When your hair is all messed up, you’re so dirty, and you are totally happy, I think of how Mommy loved to see you happy and playing hard. You are Mommy’s Princess, and what a special girl you are. The way that you run to Daddy when he gets home is priceless. When you greet someone with one of your smiles, you give them so much happiness.

I pray that you will always continue to shine that ray of hope to the world. You tell me everyday about how Mommy is in Heaven and if we do what the Bible says, we will go to see her again. We will give her big, big hugs, and we’ll never have to tell her goodbye again. And your eyes just glow when you say it. I adore you. 

We had so much fun today. Cooking together early this morning, singing, eating way too much sugar. Then a movie, where you sat right by me and held my hand through most of it. Hugs and pictures, lunch and singing, lots of running. Bible time, and then Daddy came home early for your day! We went swimming and had supper with Grandma. You find joy in so many things-- big and little. And you are such a little mermaid! You are beautiful, little darling, inside and out! 

Happy 5th Birthday, Precious Girl!

Love always,
 At the American Girl Store with her sweet cousins! 

 I love this girl!

 Playing together in the garden...

 Happy, pretty Kenna!

 Precious girl!

 The Little Mermaid! :) 

Sleep well, my darling little 5-year-old! <3 

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Busy, busy, long, long, happy, happy! =)

How do the days go by so quickly?! I can't believe another week has come and gone. And what a great week it's been:

On Sunday the Heck kids and I worshiped at Concordia and spent the day with the Leonards. It's so much fun to spend time with all of them. I know that they will be dressed modestly, they will say things that are right and will not take the Lord's name in vain. They will give good advice, and we'll laugh a lot. How can you not when you have Drew, Bob, and Josh in one room!? Getting to catch up with my Stacy that afternoon was amazing. Just what I needed. :)  Great to have Christian friends!

Monday was another Abby day! Yay! She came with me to hang out with the kids. The kids love her, and she's great with them. We had fun doing birthday shopping and getting stuff for our American Girl camp later this month. Abs was a great help. We went down to Concordia that night for a game night, and wow! It was awesome! Lots of people, lots of laughing, lots and lots of fun! Got home really late, but still got my goodnight kisses from my sweet MM! Again, great to have Christian friends!

Over the course of the week, I was able to meet Kristy and Kelly~ Aunt Shauna's other sisters. She also has Aunt Chas, but I have been blessed to know her for as long as I've known Aunt Shauna. All of the sisters are very pretty, and they're super nice and fun. The kids love them so much! I love it when people come over-- and I love it when people talk about Aunt Shauna. That's something that I've really noticed with the family-- they talk about Aunt Shauna a lot. To each other, to the kids. That is so great. Not only is it good for the kids to hear it from their family, but it's also good for me to hear it, 'cause I can then tell the kids more about her while we're at home together. We also got to see Dudley and Teresa (Shauna's parents) a few times. The kids always love that, too! This family takes time for each other and really loves each other. It is beautiful to watch. Just like when Darren gets home and his kids go running to him with big hugs and smiles! 

Wednesday as a big day. My Carter Man got a hair cut—he was needing one for sure! As kids always seem to, he looked older right away. Just as cute as could be. Then my Kenna Girl got her hair cut—several inches off, and oh! Does she look precious! I loved it before, too, but this is just adorable. But wow, she looks way too big. She is such a pretty, pretty girl. Just like her mommy. She has a smile that could light up every room she walks into. I keep looking at my kiddos and thinking how much they’ve already grown since I moved here… goes too quickly!

Thursday was an awesome day because I got to bring Candice with me! She is so great. She keeps me smilin' all day. We had a day at home and, for once, I got everything marked off my "To Do" list! We went through all the kids' clothes and sang lots of songs. That night Nathan and Ashley and their girls (plus a couple extra) came over for Family Night. It was wonderful to spend time outside playing, swinging, and talking together. Family night is something that I've read about on Facebook for a while, but to actually be there for one! Yeah, it was sooooooooooo great. Christian friends, such a blessing!

Friday was a busy and great day! Building cleaning, Bob and Dustin spending the afternoon with us, taking the kids to the store. Carter saying he loved me, but he doesn't "wike" girls. Going to the park to see Abs, Stacy, Ashley, and her girlies. What a beautiful night it was! I love talking to those ladies, watching those sweeties, seeing the sunshine, and a bunch of happy guys playing disc golf. The Barretts came over for the evening and we talked, laughed, and learned together. It was such a blessing! Those girls are the sweetest and prettiest in the world! The night was very pretty, and it was so peaceful to sit outside and listen to the sounds of the country with Dutches and my MM. I love living in the country. It's my dream kinda house and yard and just life... :) This home is a blessing—full of people who want to live their lives for God. 

And then today! Today started a long time ago, it feels like, but that's just because sooooo many good things have filled today up to the brim! For the first time since starting this “job,” I woke the kids up, and we left the house by just after 9. That didn’t used to seem early to me, but now it does! We went to Concordia and had a wonderful turn-out for our first Ladies’ Class. It was SO encouraging! Stacy did a wonderful job teaching this first week. The park is great, and the kids did so well. Best of all was having Sara there! Then home to drop off Candice and pick stuff up for the birthday party for three sweet girls! It was a fun, pretty, and sugary day! There were so many funny and priceless moments. And there wasn’t a moment when I didn’t wish that Aunt Shauna were there with us. Seeing the smiles of her big girl, the funny puppet shows, the line of kids eating sugar, cuddling her little man who was sleepy waking up from a nap, singing songs and dancing on the front porch, hugging her parents, sisters, brothers, nieces and nephews. She was such an awesome lady who kept so many people smilin’ and happy. “A home up in Heaven is waiting…” =)