The Macs

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

I forgot that summer is busy.

 We had a great weekend. Busy, but full of lots of fun things. I realized this weekend that I forgot how busy summer is. I was thinking that things were winding down and we would be enjoying a relaxing summer...but really the busyness is just beginning around here. Summer + farming = busy. And I am not even the one doing all the hard work!

 Wheat harvest started on Monday. This is the earliest harvest they have ever had. But even with harvest under way we managed to find time over the weekend to dip our toes in the water. We enjoyed spending time with both of our families and ate some really yummy food too.

Levi has been getting in on lots of the harvest fun. He thinks it is great and wishes he didn't have to come home to take a nap or go to bed at night. This evening we ended up staying home and playing while daddy worked. It was tough prying him away from the harvest crew.

 There were combines and tractors and trucks driving around everywhere today. Busy, busy. Levi wasn't the only one excited to watch the combine speed down our country road tonight. 

Somehow I managed to plan a garage sale the week of wheat harvest. I guess it is best to get all the craziness out of the way all at once, right? So tomorrow I am going to try to de-clutter the house as much as is possible in one day. (Does that tell you how prepared I am for the garage sale?) Wish me luck. I am trying to tell myself that it will all be worth it in the end.

Wheat harvest and garage sales. Let the busyness begin.

Monday, May 28, 2012

always remember

I saw this video at church yesterday.
Today we remember.


And we thank God for the many soldiers and their families who have sacrificed for our freedom.
We will always remember.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

griffin {eight months}

Griffin  ::  8 months

The eight month picture was a challenge.

Rolling over wasn't a problem this time...but eating the flash card was. Griffin wanted that piece of paper in his mouth and if I took it away from him, he was mad.

We had a few moments of sweet baby stares...

...and happy smiles.

But the rest of the time he was devouring the flash card.

Good thing you are only eight months once and we don't have to use that flash card again.

He kept putting the card above his head. It was like he was saying, "See mom. I'm eight months old. Now please leave me alone."

I called his brother in for some assistence. Maybe a little distraction would help.

Not so just turned into wrestling.

And then daddy came home. Finally some help! By this time we had printed off a replacement card (because he had eaten the first one). I tried to have Joel sneak in the card while he wasn't looking. It didn't work. He saw that card right away and once he got his little hands on it, was back to eating it again.

Oh well. I guess that is you at eight months.


I don't feel like I have a lot of new things to tell you this month. Eight months has been much more predictable...which is nice because I'm sure that will change again! You have a pretty predictable schedule, you are a predictable eater (by predictable I mean you eat a lot!), and your sleeping is even becoming more predictable. I still wouldn't say that you are sleeping through the night but you are getting so close. So close is much better than waking up ten times every night!

I love seeing your little personality develop. You love being with your brother and get excited when he does things with you. He loves you too. He always wants to know where you are and what you are doing. Before you go to bed he always says, "Good night Gwiffin. I wuv you. I wuv you too." He is already putting words in your mouth but he really does love you.

You haven't started talking yet but we definitely know when you are excited. You love food. You bang  your hands on your highchair while you wait for me to get you something to eat. And if it doesn't come fast enough you practically start yelling...or screaming! If you aren't eating something you are trying to put anything you can into your mouth. Nothing is safe anymore. You also love to take baths. you bang your hands up and down and splash away getting yourself and your brother all wet. You love the water. I'm guessing you will love playing in the pool this summer too.

Nine months is just around the corner and that hardly seems possible. You are growing so fast. I am so thankful for my "two boys" as your brother would say. What a blessing you are to me, little Griffin!

Love, Mama

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

pics with miss megan

I begged Megan to take Griffin's six month pictures. Levi calls her Miss Megan. She has taken six month pictures of all my kids...Cora included. I love that. Right after our photo shoot, Megan decided she wouldn't be taking family pictures this year. Phew...we were lucky. Hopefully my crazy family wasn't the reason for her decision. :)

Six month pictures are the one thing that all my kids will have that are the same. It might sound silly, but it is something that is important to me. When I see all of their six month pictures, my family feels whole for just a moment.

I feel like their little personalities start shining through around six months and I love how that has been captured in these pictures. What a gift that we had a peek into Cora's personality even though she was with us for such a short time. They all have similarities and differences but they are each fearfully and wonderfully made unique by our Creator God...they are the only one just like them. And, oh, how I love them each so much.

Cora & Levi :: 6 months

Cora was serious. You had to work to get her to smile, but when she did she would flash you the sweetest grins. Pure little girl sweetness. Levi was a cheese-ball (and still is!). You didn't have to work at all to get him to smile. He was always smiling. He gave big open mouth grins the whole time. 

Griffin :: 6 months

Griffin not only reminds us so much of his sister in looks, but also in personality. He is much more serious than Levi. He made us work hard for a smile. He was too busy being a boy and eating dirt and grass. But his smiles are pure sweetness when you finally get one. Levi can make him smile the most...but he was exploring the farm with Megan's girls and wasn't interested in helping us out much!

 {there is that grass going into his mouth}


And a few of Mr. Cheese-ball himself.

I love this one.

It reminds me so much of this one we took with Cora.

Thank you Megan for being patient with my two silly boys (especially the big one) and for capturing these sweet moments with my family.

Monday, May 21, 2012

a picnic kind of day

We spent the morning at the park with my grandparents. My grandma packed us a picnic lunch. It was a great morning.

And tonight we decided that the weather was perfect for a picnic dinner too. This time it was a pizza picnic. I didn't have to cook and I got to hang out with my boys. It was perfect.

We have had some beautiful days in Kansas this spring and we are trying to enjoy every one of them. Usually Kansas is windy, hot, humid, buggy, and not so ideal for picnics. 

But not was a picnic kind of day.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

spring cleaning

So...I've been doing a little spring/summer cleaning. My sister and I are having a garage sale in a few weeks. Good motivation.

 I now have one cleaned out cabinet. Hello pretty white dishes. One cupboard down, many more messy and cluttered cabinets to go.

Now that I am getting a little more sleep and in full get-ready-for-garage-sale mode, I've started working on Griffin's room again. Gasp...I know. Maybe I'll actually finish it before he is one. Just maybe.

I am also finally ordering a Griffin print from Penny Paper Co. I've been putting it off hoping they would have another sale someday. If you have been wanting one of their cute prints now is the time to get one. It doesn't get any better than a buy 1 get 1 free sale! They didn't ask me to blog about that...I just like to share a good deal. :)

Let's hope I can keep up the motivation to get my house clean and organized (even though I know it will only stay that way for about five seconds)!

Friday, May 18, 2012

daddy's little shadow

He would go everywhere with his dad if he could. And I'm pretty sure he thinks that his presence is crucial to the operation of the farm. He was so excited this morning when daddy called and asked if he wanted to come plant soy beans with him. He even got to bring his lunch and eat in the tractor with daddy. Tractors make really good babysitters, you know. If only I could permanently park one in my yard...I might get a lot more done around here. :)

I am so thankful for the time Levi gets to spend with his daddy. I know they are creating memories together that he will never forget...and I know the time they spend together with play a huge part in shaping his character as a young man. My boys have a great role model. And a daddy who loves them so much. They've got it good. I've got it good too. A husband who calls and asks if his son can come work with him. A husband who loves spending time with his sons. I am so thankful for him.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

griffin's dedication

(photos by Ian Johnson)

Four years ago on Mother's Day we dedicated Cora. Two years ago on Mother's Day we dedicated Levi. And this year on Mother's Day we dedicated little Griffin. This is what we wrote about Griffin for the dedication:

In Welsh the name Griffin means “strong in faith”. We chose Jeremiah 9:23-24 for Griffin. It is our prayer that Griffin would grow up to be a man of strength because he understands and knows our Heavenly Father. We naturally want our boys to be strong and smart, but we are praying that Griffin would have the kind of strength that only comes from Him...the kind of strength that points others to Him.

Griffin’s middle name is James after Joel’s brother, James. James has a passion for people and for others to know Jesus. As we pray for Griffin to understand and know God, we pray that his life will also overflow with a passion for the things that concern our Heavenly Father...just like his Uncle James.

Griffin has such a sweet personality, he thinks his big brother is awesome, and he resembles his sister Cora in so many ways. Griffin is a blessing to our family and we are so grateful that the Lord has entrusted him to us.

My feelings this year on Griffin's dedication day were very similar to my feelings two years ago when we dedicated Levi. Although we have dedicated Griffin to the Lord since the day he was born, there is a certain heaviness that comes as we stand up in front of our church body to publicly give back to God, what He has so graciously given us in the gift of our son, Griffin. Don't get me wrong. I know God is sovereign over my kids. I know that He loves them way more than I do...His plan for their lives is far greater than my plans for them. But if I'm honest, there is a certain heaviness in that too. Knowing that I have to hold my kids loosely in my hands. And knowing what it is like to have to let go. They are His. God has given us the amazing gift and responsibility to raise them. But sometimes I want to hold on too tight. If you ask me if I trust God, I would say yes. But the reality is that I still struggle. I still have to make a daily choice to trust God fully...especially when it comes to my kids.

And then I think about my purpose and calling as a mom. I get overwhelmed when I think of the huge responsibility I have in teaching and training these boys in God's Word. I want them to come to understand and know God. I want them to love God and serve Him with all of their hearts for all of their days. Last week in Bible study we were talking about our call as Christians to remain steadfast, to build up our faith, to keep learning, to keep praying. Persevering can seem overwhelming at times. Thankfully we are not called to persevere in our own power, but in the persevering powers of God, who is "able to keep us from falling" (Jude 24). I think I can apply that to being a mom too. I am called...along with bring my boys up in the training and instruction of the Lord. This seems like an overwhelming task, but it is a job that I don't have to do (and can't do!) in my own power, but in the persevering powers of God.

I smiled today at our last BSF for the year when I saw that the home training sheet was about the privilege of being a parent. I guess it is something the Lord is trying impress on my heart right now! There was one paragraph on seeking God's perspective in parenting and I love what these two parents had to say,

"The first thing I did when I opened my eyes each morning was to thank God that He knew everything the hours of that day held for me and then to ask Him to help me fulfill the purpose of that one day."

"I tried to think consciously of God's presence flowing through me to my children. Through me, God's own arm loved my child, protecting him, restraining him, teaching him. Through me, God's voice was speaking to my child in wisdom, in pleasure, in admonition. What a difference it made in my reactions to rely on God's power instead of resorting to my human instincts!"
(BSF International, The Acts of the Apostles 2011)

I love being a mom, but I know I don't have the strength within myself to be the kind of mom my boys need without the power of God. I am so thankful for His power at work within me!

Attention, Israel!
God, our God! God the one and only!
Love God, your God, with your whole heart: love him with all that's in you, love him with all you've got!
Write these commandments that I've given you today on your hearts. Get them inside of you and then get them inside your children. Talk about them wherever you are, sitting at home or walking in the street; talk about them from the time you get up in the morning to when you fall into bed at night. Tie them on your hands and foreheads as a reminder; inscribe them on the doorposts of your homes and on your city gates.
Deuteronomy 6:4-9 (The Message)