When the Bigs are Away

the littles have the playroom all to themselves.

04093011bertroksplayroom

04093015bertroksplayroom

04093013bertroksplayroom

Spring at the Zoo

There aren't really words to describe God's glory in His creation, so I will let the pictures speak for themselves.

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04091348daffodils

04091343train

04091339family

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04091324purpletulips

04091322ketchupmustardtulip

04091347tulips

04091346reptile

04091325brighttulips

A---men.

Packages

The children are always intrigued by a package at the door. We are so blessed to always associate packages with "something good," "something fun," or "something interesting."

Can you guess what is in the package that arrived today?

A fragrance wafted out as the box was opened. "It smells....like....marshmallows," says Roks.
04090026roxbox
"It smells...like...coffee," says Roks
04090027roxbox
Did you guess?

It smells like honey, and it was sitting in the sun before I found it. It was warm and fragrant when we opened it.

And we hope to make candles with 10 lbs of it.
04090028beeswax
Inspiration courtesy of the West Ladies.


A Sunny Weekend in the Garden

04090001housefront
It was time to work on the garden. Well and truly. And we had a gorgeous, warm, sunny weekend to do it.
04090003tulips
The gardening season has been not extremely successful for us so far this year. The deer ate all the tulips.
04090008beeflower
We have a bumper crop of giant dandelions.
04090012jomrosedig
Daddy had rented a tiller a little while ago and tilled up the whole patch along the front of the house. It needed a lot of work, to dig out all the clumps of grass and weeds. So we did that first, and that pretty much took a whole day.
04090018rosebertdig
We had planted some perennials, such as lilacs, verbena, hydrangeas, some daisies, lavendar and a rose bush, on Friday. Then on Saturday we planted about 150 annuals.
04090015bertdig
Everybody helped one way or another.
04090020japanesemaple
I made a mistake by purchasing this japanese red maple to go in front of the house, by the front door. The red of the tree blended in with the red of the brick, and it was awful. But we were blessed to have another spot on the other side of the walk, where we lost a pine tree. So Daddy hacked away at years of ivy build-up and planted our little maple tree.
04090023gaterdress
It was so warm and lovely this weekend that the Gater was able to wear her flowery summer dress for the occasion.

The Girls in the Back Yard

04091241chooks
The 9 girls are living happily in the backyard.
04091240chookshed
Rose and Joman faithfully cared for them, each day cleaning out their boxes and feeding and watering them while they lived in the house. Daddy and the older children constructed this area for the chickens to live outside.
04091242chooks
I don't know all their names or if they even all have names. Well, I know a couple of them have names. But I have some suggestions. How about, "Madonna," "Gwyneth," or "Perez Hilton?" (C0mmenter Tubs also suggested, "Barbara," "Whoopi," "Joy," "Elisabeth," and "Sherri." Good thought. I like it.)
04091243buffchook
Aah, but that may require the kind of education my children are not quite ready for yet.

Getting the Perfect Easter Photo -- how to

04091290rokseaster
Wash your children squeaky clean, and dress them nicely.

04091289bertroks
Matching clothes are a must.

04091288rosegater
Check smiles.

04091285rosegatorclose

The perfect location is one filled with flowers and a symbol of the season.
04091291rokscross

04091292rokscross

04091293rokscross

04091294rokscross
Delete middle child.

Seder Meal

04091309burning
First, the children found small pieces of leavened bread, which was scattered and hidden in the house. They scooped up the bread with pieces of paper, and then we burned them all up together.
04091315daddywashrose
We washed our hands.
04091313jomanwash

04091311bertwash

04091310sedertable
Then we were ready for the Seder Meal.
04091314roksjomanseder

04091321haggadah
We used a Haggadah to help us tell the story and know the meanings of the different items on the Seder plate. Roks had his own version with color-in pictures of the Seder plate, Egyptian plagues, Jesus, and other things.
04091316bertkarpas
Bert eats the karpas, dipped in salt water to represent the tears and sweat of the Hebrew slaves.
04091317roksbitterherbs
Roks eats the bitter herbs. (Horseradish.)
04091319roseeat

04091318jomaneat
We did enjoy this long, meaningful meal and time together. It was a wonderful way to explain the sacrifice Jesus made for us to free us from the slavery of sin and death. I hope we can do this again next year.
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