RaRa Robin

Wrex bought an old, bred milk cow that Wryder really took a liking to.  He named her RaRa Robin (after his grandma).  She’s the sweetest ole thing…and she really loved him, too.

Wryder and RaRa

Wryder and RaRa

We all waited so patiently for her to have her baby and prayed and prayed that the kids would be able to watch see that baby born.

In the days before she calved, Wryder took such great care of her.  He’d walk to the corn stalks south of our house and grab a couple of partial ears of corn, bring them home and shell them for her.

Shellin' corn

Shellin’ corn

We’d been watching her and checking on her every few hours every day.  Wrex was even getting up in the night to check her.  One Monday morning, they went out to check her and then Sawyer came runnin’ back to the house telling me that RaRa’s water bag was hanging out!

I threw some shoes out and sure enough, a baby was about to be born!  Wryder brought a lick tub over outside the fence and within 10 minutes, the kids got to see LIFE!

Good momma!

Good momma!

RaRa had a sweet little heifer calf that Wryder has named – are you ready for this?  Betty Harbor Baby Whanny Kroeker Phipps.  Ahem.

Wryder and Betty

Wryder and Betty

Despite that big ole bag RaRa has, there’s not much milk to be had so we all made the decision to sell her so that Wryder could buy a cow to really get his herd started, just like Sawyer did at four.

My big boy was so brave!  He loved sweet RaRa but understood that it was the responsible thing to do.  He didn’t cry at all…and I bawled all day!

One last goodbye

One last goodbye

Love this sweet boy

Love this sweet boy

He took her to the sale barn with dad on Monday and got her sold.

Watchin' her sell

Watchin’ her sell

This boy is just one of the sweetest, funnest, brightest balls of energy I’ve ever met!  Saying goodbye to a good friend – even when that friend is an animal – is never easy and he did it with such grace.  So proud of my brave boy.  Here’s to finding the next great one!

Worth 1,000 Words – Dance Dance Dance

For Sawyer’s 6th birthday, we signed her for dance lessons.  She’s taken jazz and tap lessons for the past year and has really enjoyed herself!

She finished up her 4th recital for the year and did so well (and looked as cute as a button)!

Beautiful dancer!

Beautiful dancer!

Quick photo with mom before she hit the stage

Quick photo with mom before she hit the stage

Blue suede shoes

Blue suede shoes

Space jam...with her tongue out!

Space jam…with her tongue out!

Cute little toot!

Cute little toot!

Brother was awfully proud of her and picked out a hot pink rose for her!

Melt. My. Heart.

Melt. My. Heart.

So sweet

So sweet

Seriously?!  Swoon.

Seriously?! Swoon.

We’re gonna take the summer of and see what this next fall will bring!

Save

Save

Mother’s Day 2017

I’ve had some really good Mother’s Day celebrations…like last year, celebrating a less than week old Sayble.

I’ve had some not-so-great Mother’s Day celebrations…like the year Wryder was born and I was sicker than a dog.  I mean, SICK.

This year?  This year was one for the record books – it was just a really, really good day.

The kids had me stay in bed until they said I could come out.  Well, if you insist!

Wrex had breakfast cooked and they had some really fun gifts and cards and pictures for me – melt my heart!

Happy Mother's Day, mom!

Happy Mother’s Day, mom!

A Lego Mother's Day wish!

A Lego Mother’s Day wish!

My card from Wryder.  Just WOW.

My card from Wryder. Just WOW.

We spent some time outside and then I got to spend the majority of the day with the girl who made me a momma as she performed in her last dance recital of the season.

When she was all done, we came home and hung out with the rest of the family outside because it was beautiful!  We took a little golf cart tour into the neighboring pastures and Wryder got to show me the dead cow he’d seen – a real treat!  Ha!

I remember going through a season where being called “mom” (by a friend, out of sarcasm and a nod to my mature, responsible nature) felt like an insult.  I was young!  I was fun!  I wasn’t a mom!  I don’t quite know what was going on in my heart…but just let me say oh, how the tides have turned.  There’s not much sweeter to my ears than hearing, “Mom/Momma.”  (I mean, the 580th time on a Friday, I might not enjoy it as much as the first time I hear it on a random Tuesday, but still…)

Being “momma” is a badge I wear with pride! So thankful for these sweet little cubs – some of my favorite people/best friends/the most wonderful little humans on the planet!  They are the product of our love, our reward, our heritage.

My babies

My babies

It’s an amazing thing to have the opportunity to shape the future by what you spend your time on and pour into today.  Nothing is wasted in the Kingdom of heaven and nothing is wasted in motherhood – no hug is addled, no words will return void, no teaching or training or correcting will turn up empty.  It ALL matters.  I am thankful I get to be the full time shoe tier, hands washer, book reader, swing pusher, hair brusher, nap time tucker in-er, school teacher, morning pray-er, owie kisser…

I’m thankful for their daddy, too – for lots of reasons – but especially for the fact that he works so diligently so that I can be at home during the week to actually BE momma.

Good gosh, I love this man

Good gosh, I love this man

Some days in mommyland are just plain hard.  Some days are just plain cake.  But all of them?  All of them are worth it.

Cheers, mommas!

Worth 1,000 Words: As of Late

Just a few of my favorites as of late…

I rooted for the Chiefs last weekend...in my Bronco's gear, of course!

I rooted for the Chiefs last weekend…in my Bronco’s gear, of course!

And loved on this little sweetie...

And loved on this little sweetie…

She's definitely a snuggle bug!

She’s definitely a snuggle bug!

Wryder had his first big boy cleaning and he did SO great!  No cavities!

Wryder had his first big boy cleaning and he did SO great! No cavities!

This girl LOVES to write and color!

This girl LOVES to write and color!

And she loves her tummy - ha!

And she loves her tummy – ha!

These three sat all in a row to watch a little show.  Swoon.

These three sat all in a row to watch a little show. Swoon.

I don't get to snuggle this guy very often so I sure soak it up when I do!

I don’t get to snuggle this guy very often so I sure soak it up when I do!

Cutest little Valentine I know!

Cutest little Valentine I know!

Bound by the Spirit

Pain is pain…

Hurt is hurt…

Illness is illness…

Worry is worry…

Sorrow is sorrow…

Affliction is affliction…

no matter where you live or what color your skin is or what language you speak or what you do for a living or what you call home…

On the other hand…

joy is joy…

commiseration is commiseration…

sympathy is sympathy…

sympathy is empathy…

love is love…

no matter where you live or what color your skin is or what language you speak or what you do for a living or what you call home…

So thankful that the Lord gave us the ability to communicate simply through compassion.   Let us love our neighbors today and everyday.  Let us be bound by the Holy Spirit out of our love for Christ.  Let THAT rule us.  Let THAT move us.  Let THAT be what motivates us.

On a day where satan so badly wants to divide us, let us let the love of Christ bind us.

Lord, may the words of our mouths, the acts of our hands, the meditations of our hearts bless you…and may you bless America.

God bless the USA!

God bless the USA!

Mesa Is Growing Up Up Up!

I had the privilege of throwing a birthday party for a SA-WEET little one year old today!  I adore her and her little family and we couldn’t wait to honor her – we are so glad that she was born!

She sure is!

She sure is!

We went with a hot air balloon theme…and I’m not really sure why except that I thought it would be cute?!  Is that a good enough reason??

Those cloud balloons, though...

Those cloud balloons, though…

Everything was pink and white and minty blue/green.  We made hot air balloons out of paper lanterns and berry baskets and I found the cutest cloud balloons and cups to go with our dinner ware.

The spread

The spread

Up, up and away!

Up, up and away!

We made cloud and hot air balloon bunting and had it hanging in the window…

Happy birthday, indeed!

Happy birthday, indeed!

We had 12 months worth of pictures of our little sweetie hanging on the mantle…

Sweet baby Mesa

Sweet baby Mesa

It was so festive in here!

It was so festive in here!

We made giant hot air balloons out of, well, giant balloons and apple baskets!  They turned out so cute!

The big kids had fun in these!

The big kids had fun in these!

The whole shebang!

The whole shebang!

We got to hang out with Mesa and her momma most of the day – always a treat in my book!

Pretty girls!

Pretty girls!

The kids were so excited to give her her gift and kept wanting to pose with it themselves!

Take my picture, mom!

Take my picture, mom!

She finally got to play with it and I think it was a hit!

Tea time!

Tea time!

Good gravy, she's cute!

Good gravy, she’s cute!

Once the daddies got home from the sale barn, we played tea party, a few Wii games and then the real party started!

Sayble got to sit in the booster so that our guest of honor could have the high chair.  Needless to say, she thought she was big stuff!  I don’t think she was quiet the entire dinner!

She was full of all kinds of antics, including the towel on her head!

She was full of all kinds of antics, including the towel on her head!

Mesa really loved the balloons on her seat…and the pancakes, too!

Where's Mesa?!

Where’s Mesa?!

There she is!

There she is!

Waiting (patiently) for cake time!

Waiting (patiently) for cake time!

We made her a hot air balloon cake and she was so cute trying to blow that candle out!

Cake time!

Cake time!

Wondering what the heck this thing was!

Look at that face!

Hurry and sing so I can eat the cake instead!

Hurry and sing so I can eat the cake instead!

Let's do this thang!

Let’s do this thang!

Eatin' it by the fistfuls!

Eatin’ it by the fistfuls!

Startin' to get full...

Startin’ to get full…

One more little bite...

One more little bite…

Oh, Mesa Moo…we sure do love you!

The Phipps Five and Mesa Moo!

The Phipps Five and Mesa Moo!

We bless the day you were born!  May you embrace your role as the daughter of the Lord of the Lords, the first born, a princess of the King of Kings.  We pray you run to Him all the days of your life.  He is worthy of your adoration and you are worthy of His love.  Can’t wait for number two!

The Calm Before the Storm

For a January day, it sure was a nice enough one!  We’re all bracing for a nasty snow and ice storm that’s supposed to roll in tomorrow, but today?  Today was pretty pretty.  (I think the lack of wind helped as much as anything!)

Sayble has been dying to go outside since she’s gotten her wheels under her, but it’s been REALLY cold prior to today.

As dad got ready to head outside to do chores, Sawyer and Wryder wanted to go to.  Well, once Sayble saw them suit up, she sure wanted to join in the action.  We got her all bundled up and out and the door we went!

How cute is this little toot?!  Can you see her under there?

How cute is this little toot?! Can you see her under there?

I bet she walked a good mile or more this morning, quite a ways with her little legs!

She looked so tiny next to the house...

She looked so tiny next to the house…

Of course, we had to stop and pet the doggie…

Sweet ole Booey

Sweet ole Booey

and the kitties…

Say and Tractory.  Wonder who named that one?!

Say and Tractory. Wonder who named that one?!

and haul one around…

Say with Damilla Willa.  Don't ask.

Say with Damilla Willa. Don’t ask.

We spent some time at the park with brother and sister…

Good grief I love these kiddos...

Good grief I love these kiddos…

then we spent a little time swinging before heading inside for a peanut butter sandwich!

Pure joy!

Pure joy!

Who knows what this weather will actually bring…but we took advantage of today!

A Little of This, A Little of That

The kids got Wendy’s coupons for free Junior Frosties a while back and we decided to use those puppies for Fun Friday!

This girl loves her sweets!

This girl loves her sweets!

She ate the whole thing by herself!  (Don't even think of helping her with that spoon!)

She ate the whole thing by herself! (Don’t even think of helping her with that spoon!)

These 2 enjoyed theirs as well!

These 2 enjoyed theirs as well!

****************

Earlier this week, as we were rushing around getting ready for Awana/Cubbies, I looked at the calendar and with about 12 minutes to spare, saw it was a “crazy hair day.”  Normally, we would fall under that category anyways but we wanted to go with something a little more purposeful.

We decided upon a donut..on a donut plate.  I made a quick bun and an even quicker donut frosting with sprinkles out of foam.  (Have I told you how much I love foam??  LOVE that stuff.)  Thankfully, this had a sticky back and we stuck it right to her hair!

Cute as a button and sweet as...a donut!

Cute as a button and sweet as…a donut!

Of course, with all the picture taking, Wryder wanted in on the action.

Ready for Cubbies!

Ready for Cubbies!

One handsome rascal!  He picked out his entire outfit all by himself.  Swoon.

****************

We got a new game for Christmas called “Life on the Farm.”  The kids couldn’t wait to bust it out and it really is fun to play, for a couple of country kids especially.  You get to buy and sell cows for the most part – right up dad’s alley, too.

Dad had spread himself kind of thin and had to pass up an opportunity to buy cows for a really cheap price.

Sawyer:  “Wait, why in the world would you pass on a cattle auction?”

Oh, yes, a girl after her daddy’s heart…

Life on the Farm

Life on the Farm

****************

We’ve started school again (after a lengthy and well-deserved Christmas break).  This time around, Sayble is only napping once a day instead of two, so we’re all trying to figure out what that looks like as far as school (and mom’s sanity) goes.

Lately, there’s been a lot of this:

Pen thief!

Pen thief!

This sweet little thing LOVES to write!  As long as we can keep it on paper, I’m A-ok with that!

****************

Over New Year’s, we all traveled to North Platte to do some post-Christmas shopping/errand running and Wrexy insisted on pedicures for the girls!  (We didn’t object much!)

Time for our toes!

Time for our toes!

I sure love this girl...

I sure love this girl…

Sawyer had her first one before her 5th birthday and has loved them ever since!

****************

We also took a tour of the Perkins County Museum!  It’s in a beautiful, historic home right off Main street and she’s been wanting to go in for a while.  That morning, I just happened to see that they were open so I surprised her with a visit!

She loved the phonograph!!

She loved the phonograph!!

The icebox was pretty cool, too!

The icebox was pretty cool, too!

It was really neat and our tour guide was just as sweet as pie!  So many cool things to see but I loved the old school house, but didn’t get a picture.  What the what?!

****************

We have the privilege of throwing a sweet one year old’s birthday party this next week!  I’ve been working on cutting and stringing and all kinds of little paper crafts.  I can only give you a sneak peek for now but I’ll make sure and post lots of pictures after the fact!

Someone's growing up...

Someone’s growing up…

****************

It feels like we’re getting back into our routine again after the holiday season.  We’re currently bracing for a snow/ice storm that we’re all hoping isn’t as bad as the meteorologists are predicting.  I’m hoping to get get my fair share of football games in if the electricity will stay on!

Farm Fun

Our sweet neighbor – who takes care of things when we are out of town, helps us thaw frozen pipes, rescues me when my battery is dead…seriously, he’s a saint – invited the kids over the other day for some farm fun!

There are new baby lambs on the place so we had to go check them out!

How cute is this guy, backwards hat and all?

How cute is this guy, backwards hat and all?

She's pretty cute, too!

She’s pretty cute, too!

Look at that sweet baby!

Look at that sweet baby!

Sayble loves having her wheels under her and just wanted to explore!

Gettin' a little help from dad...

Gettin’ a little help from dad…

and Mr. Doug!

and Mr. Doug!

We are so thankful to have such wonderful neighbors!

Family of the Spirit

Oh, my heart.  The bestie and the adoptive momma, Nonna, came to visit earlier this week.  They hadn’t been out to our new home and with 3 kids, 3 and under, it was quite a feat!  That’s how much she loves me, people. 

Almost here!  EEP!

Almost here! EEP!

The kids had a good time being wild and wooly together!  Wryder and Eva teamed up quite a bit being that they are both three.  Day one, she thought he was wonderful!  Day two, the new had worn off a bit and she clung to Sawyer most of the day.

There was lots of book reading and stroller pushing and game playing.  Dessa mainly ran back and forth from basement to the main floor as she shuffled kids from place to place.  That girl was busy!

1, 3, 1, 3

1, 3, 1, 3

Toys!

Toys!

Bedhead

Bedhead

The highlight of the day!

The highlight of the day!

Nonna is always a hit amongst the grandkids, mine included.  She has this knack to see people…and not just with physical eyes…but to see them and get them and call the best out in them.  Ask me how I know.  The kids are always drawn to her sweet and melodious voice, her loving eyes and open arms.  Plus, she has this ability to make each kid feel like they are the most important person in the room.  She always takes the time…

Games with Nonna!

Games with Nonna!

Making birthday videos!

Making birthday videos!

This girl knows how wonderful Nonna is!

This girl knows how wonderful Nonna is!

It was so nice to have them here, even for just a few short days.  These women are two of my most trusted allies, my biggest cheerleaders and staunch encouragers.  They are women of deep and abiding love, full of Godly wisdom, brimming in grace and mercy.  They have had a HUGE hand in making me who I am today by loving me and mentoring me in my impressionable twenties.

I woke up crying yesterday morning, knowing they would be leaving and it didn’t get much better the rest of the day.  These women have been my sister, my mother, best friends, baby deliverers!  They make me desire to be a better wife, mother, daughter, sister, ministry partner, lover of Jesus.  Their love is deep and true and though we talk and text and email, I miss the days of seeing them multiple times a week…the family dinners…the birthday celebrations…the Bible studies…the long talks…the sense of family that was just right down the road instead of a state away.

The beautiful thing with the family of the spirit, is that the Holy Spirit binds you tighter than any amount of physical proximity can.  These ladies are in my heart.

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