Sunday, July 29, 2012

we're almost there

Well he's almost home. I'm hoping my sanity comes back sometime tomorrow. These last two weeks have been interesting...not just because I have been a single parent but for many other reasons out of my control. So anyway, we are in the home stretch for daddy to be home and we are all so excited.

Evangeline has found that putting things on her head make people laugh. She will wear Ari's underwear all over the place. I think she had this particular pair on for about half an hour, just going on with her regular business.

Ari is always so helpful and he loves doing things to entertain her. Blowing bubbles has been a big hit.

We have finally moved on to a new look for her. Since she won't keep headbands or clips in her hair, this is one that she will usually leave in.

Even though the weather has managed to stay hot, we still went to the zoo and had a really fun time. 

I know I am biased, but when my 3 year old can draw pictures better than me, I think it's picture worthy.

We've got to spend some time with Ari's cousins and friends.

Evangeline loves babies and always wants to hug them. She couldn't quite reach this one to hug so she was rubbing her and trying to give her a blanket.

As if wearing underwear on her head wasn't funny enough...

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

happy birthday!

His birthday isn't until tomorrow...but since he is on Uganda time he should already be celebrating. Happy birthday love!

Before AJ left he spent several nights out with Ari having water fights. We got some of it on video and Ari wants to watch it over and over and over.

He has so much fun with his daddy...he looks forward to hearing the garage door open in the evening because that means it's play time! We have lots of play time throughout the day but it's much different. They wrestle and have water fights and tell adventure stories.

Time with daddy is so special to them and I'm so thankful for a husband who loves to spend time with his family. He makes it a priority to show them what a godly (we try!) marriage should look like and what it's like to have a dad as the spiritual leader. 
It's not always easy, but it's worth it.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012


Have you ever come across an invention and wonder 
"Why didn't I think of that?!" 

Well here's one I just discovered. 

Meet the cuppow.

I love mason jars...they are so handy for so many things. Yes, obviously drinking is one of them but now there is a lid which makes it much handier.

Ok so I hope there are some out there who are as amazed at this as I am.

If you're not...well, let's just pretend you are :)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

missing him

AJ got to call again yesterday and then we got to chat a little online this afternoon. He is having the greatest time. This morning he helped in the Sunday school at the African Gospel Church in Masese. Gotta love all those kiddos!!

It's hard to believe we have one more week of this, but we are getting by just fine and staying busy. Before AJ left he made some videos of him reading books. Even though he isn't here, they are still able to have story time with daddy before bed. They will be so thrilled when he is home. Well, and so will I.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

he's working hard

I got to hear AJ's voice this afternoon. They are back on the mainland now and will have some internet and phone access periodically. He said the Buvuma Island was amazing and so much fun. 

They did lots of work on the school building there. He went with a team of seven (himself included) and then a missionary family joined them on the island for several days.

They also slept in the school and I believe had some other roommates, bats!

Here they are passing out candy to the kids. AJ loves kids so I'm sure his favorite part was getting to play with them.

Hopefully there will be more frequent updates since they aren't on the island anymore.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

4 days down...many to go

AJ's been gone since early Saturday morning and we have been trying to stay busy to help the time pass more quickly. I haven't been good at taking pictures lately so I don't have any of us since he's been gone.

Friday we were able to go downtown and have lunch with him. We usually get chick-fil-a so it worked out really well that it was Cow Appreciation Day! Ari loves to dress up and he was so proud to walk around downtown with his little cow costume on.  

There also happened to be a fundraiser going on downtown that Edy's ice cream was sponsoring. It was a good day for him to be dressed like a cow since there was cow stuff everywhere, including a real one.

With AJ being in Uganda, we weren't really sure what communication we were going to have especially since they are 8 hours ahead of us. Sunday we were able to chat online but then he was going to be on an island for several days after that and said there wouldn't be any communication at all. But then I had a missed phone call from him on Monday and he left a voicemail. So Tuesday I had my phone with me all day in case he tried to call again. He did get to call and attempted several times but we could never really hear each other. He sounded very excited so that was all I needed to hear to know that he was doing just fine.

The island that he is on right now is a two hour boat trip on Lake Victoria. Here is a link that shows what that ride is like. 

There is also a facebook page that they will try to update when they have internet access. Right now on the island they don't have that, so I'm sure a lot more pictures will be posted once they are back on the mainland in Uganda.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

time with daddy

This last week has been pretty uneventful. It had been a month since we had a "normal" weekend without major plans and it was sooo sooo nice. It was so uneventful I don't even remember what we did. But like I said, it was nice because we are relishing every moment with daddy before he leaves for Uganda.

Often times one or both of the kids are up before daddy leaves for work. When Ari gets up in the morning his first words are "Where's daddy?" He doesn't like sleeping in if it means he gets to spend time with his daddy instead.

We finally had a chance to go to the zoo last week. Since AJ had July 4th off we spent it at the zoo then swimming at a friends house that evening. It was hot and I was surprised Ari didn't play very long in the splash park. We hadn't been in a while so there were some new exhibits we hadn't seen yet.

Evangeline has tried her hand at sidewalk chalk. She has a hard time getting it to show up on the cement, but then realized that it shows up really well on her skin. So now she spends most of the time painting herself.

She is still very much attached to her daddy. She is getting her top teeth in and has been spending more time with daddy and mommy in the middle of the night. AJ has always been great at helping out in the middle of the night with the kids, even though he has to work the next day. Thanks babe!

Ari has been wanting us to take his picture every time the camera's out. He also asks if there is a movie on it. He loves to watch himself and Evangeline on video.

He still likes to torture his sister every once in a while. But overall he is protective and very helpful. He loves feeding her and is always wanting to share his own food with her, even if it's something he REALLY wanted.

I thought this next picture just captured a true video gamer. He asked for a drink and when I looked back he still had both hands and eyes on the game, but managed to get a drink in the process. Trust me when I say we are not in to video games. He rarely gets to play that he doesn't want to miss a second of it!

We hadn't been in the pool for a while since it had been uncomfortably hot out. Our pond has receded so much that he and some neighbor boys were down in the "pond" finding rocks. Then he decided it was a good idea to rinse his shoes in the pond...and then swim in it. Ok so the swimming didn't last for long for fear of ecoli but he went straight to the tub afterwards.

This little baby burrito has been extra snuggly since her teeth have been bothering her. Ari's all came in at once and really didn't bother him so this has been very different with her having a runny nose, low-grade fever, and loss of appetite.

Ari has been attached to this camo duck since the day his nanny and papa brought it to him. It has Joshua 1:9 on it and they got it for when AJ goes to Uganda and when he sees the duck he will remember to pray for daddy. The kids will really miss their daddy, but I know that it will be time well spent serving the Lord.

Joshua 1:9 "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged; for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."

Thursday, July 5, 2012

the rest of June

Evangeline has been enjoying the toys that we get out for my nephew. She will just bounce away in this thing.

This handsome little man is just growing like a weed. I didn't have my niece and nephew for several weeks so I am glad to be back on our routine. Ari really misses them when they don't come over. And I know Evangeline misses all the "new" toys that are out.

Ari drew a picture of his daddy when he was a little boy. I think it's cute!

Evangeline is really in to her daddy too. She can't wait for him to come home and pick her up.

We went up to Wheaton last Thursday night and stayed with AJ's sister and brother-in-law all weekend. We saw dark clouds when we neared northwest Indiana and were excited that it might rain. Instead of raining it decided to hail! Thankfully it didn't last too long since we were on the interstate and there was no where to pull off. But I don't think I have ever driven in hail before and let me tell you AJ and I thought the windshield was going to break!

We went to a little zoo on Friday with Erin and finished just in time before more storm clouds let loose. They looked worse than the hail clouds from the night before so we weren't sure what these had in store for us. Thankfully all it did was rain so we made it back just in time.

Ari was so excited to be with Aunt Erin all weekend long. I think he might have been doing a happy dance.

After naps we walked to a playground, then walked to the train. We thought Ari would really enjoy riding the train so we went two stops away and got some ice cream.

This little ice cream shop was awesome. It brought our food on a train! Ari is still enjoying his train whistle that came on top of his ice cream.

Then Friday night we went to a festival in hopes of seeing some hot air balloons.

We got a really close spot near the air balloons, but right when they were to launch the announcer said bad weather was coming in and they had to take them down. (What are the chances with all this weather?) But rain is much needed everywhere so we really can't complain.

Saturday morning was pretty low key since everyone was exhausted from the busy day on Friday. Saturday afternoon AJ and I left for a wedding that was a little north of where we were staying. It was so fun seeing old friends from college that I hadn't seen in years. Congratulations Ashley and Brian!

Then Sunday we were going to head out after lunch. We were going to cookout with Chris's family since it was his mom's birthday. But then we were hit with bad weather again. This time it was really bad. The weather people called it a land hurricane. With 80-90 mph winds and hail, there were trees and fallen limbs all over the place. Even the power lines had fallen and we were without power. So lunch was delayed and finally after it stopped raining we were able to grill. In fact, they still don't have power and probably won't get it back until next week.

On the way home we stopped at Fair Oaks Farms and just missed the birth of a calf by minutes! The baby was still gooey and the mom was breathing heavily. They say a calf is born about every hour and if you get there at the right time you can see it being born.

We let the kids play on the playground and we did a cheese maze. Some other things weren't open because of the weather but it was still fun to see what all they had. We got to sample some cheese and it was the best cheese I have ever had. Mmm...

My favorite part of the drive is seeing all the wind turbines. There has got to be hundreds of them and it makes me want one for myself. We were entertained the rest of the drive by more of Ari's drawings.

We had such a fun weekend but like usual we were glad to be back at home. The kids never switched over to Illinois time so the whole weekend they were waking up at 5:30. Yikes! But now we are back to normal and they are back to their old tricks. Well at least this little one is. She likes to show off her food on her head. It's a battle almost every meal. But it's hard not to laugh so what can I say?