The joy of new friends

In the last few months I have been able to witness something beautiful and heartmelting, as a mom.  I have got to see my children play with children they have never met before and within a few hours they are great friends.

On one Saturday this  summer I got the opportunity to see one of my friends from high school and her four children.  Our families match in terms of having 2 girls, a boy and then another girl.   They spent the morning playing with the kids, jumping on mom’s trampoline, going with rides in the bob cat, playing tea party with American girl dolls,and  running around the farm.



Later that day we saw them again along with about 10 other kids at an outdoor wedding reception.  All the kids played so well with literally zero toys, no devises, and minimal meltdowns. It makes my mama heart happy. Happy to see kids play and entertain themselves, happy to watch them make me friends, happy that they can love and embrace others like they are family!

BONUS: when my kids were playing I got to catch up with a couple of church friends from high school. A rare and fun reunion.

Another day at a Mops play date the girls played with some new friends at a Mom’s house. They had a picnic together, made a craft, swung from a willow tree, and imagined together. Another friend made!

On the 4th of July we met up with a new family that is joining our church from Texas. We went to a parade with them, the girls learned rock- paper-scissors, we had lunch and again made great friends!

In the end these friends we may see yearly, frequently or maybe never again but I am proud of them for embracing others.


Family, Kids

The Little Cousins

In my family there is an age gap of 15 years between my eldest brother and my youngest sister. Growing up we were spaced out and that translated into many years of grandchildren for my parents and now my mom.

My younger sister Molly and I have birthed a little tribe of children and it’s always an adventure when we get together. This week Molly and her three children came over to meet Amelia. They all wanted to hold her while she was still so small and new.  That meant that we had a very fun and excited group of 7 kiddos. Aged the following ( 5 days, 10 months, 2 years, 3 years , 4 years, 5 years, and 7 years).

The day was fun, sweaty, loud, filled with play, dirt, injury and lots of cousin love.

They played hard until then sun went down and way past tired boundaries. Leeland kept getting hurt every 10 minutes and we ended the day with a text to Aunt Laura to ask about signs of a concussion. We were in the clear but boy do boys play hard.

Funny things:

  • Leeland said,” oh cute! Now Henry has a baby friend!”

  • Watching Leeland Henry and Peter all sit around Amelia

  • Anne wore her dress that Grandma Wilken made and soon all three of the girls came down in their matching dresses.

Mother’s Day Interviews


At our last MOPS meeting (Mother’s of Preschoolers) my children and their teachers did an interview with them about me.  It was really interesting to get my children’s perspective on me.  I have to say Lillian really knows me spot on, Norah wants to travel to a hotel with me and Leeland, bless him, thinks that I love doing the dishes! I am thankful for this little peak into their minds and hearts!





34 weeks TODAY


Today I am officially 34 weeks pregnant. We are approaching the finishing line of this pregnancy with great speed! Spring always seems to be a busy time around here with outside projects, mowing, gardening and wrapping up the school year.  In the midst of all this new life happening in nature around us. This little miracle is also growing and getting ready to meet us all.

On Monday of this week we had an ultrasound to check on how big baby was (due to the whole gestational diabetes thing!) I have never had an ultrasound this late in the pregnancy and it was a whole new experience. We still didn’t find out the gender. It will be a good surprise and reward to find out after that whole labor ordeal.

During the ultrasound they measured baby and checked fluid levels. We saw feet, head, belly, and then the tech said, “Wow, your baby has lots of hair!” Hair was one thing that I never considered seeing in an ultrasound.  So much fun. I came from a very bald baby family and so having all my newborns adorned with lots of hair is kind of fun.  We also got to see the baby do practice breathing. At this point the baby is getting ready to breath on the outside and starting to practice all those important processes on the inside.  We saw the heart beat and heard the heart beat at a steady 140. What a great sound. The tech tried to get a good 3D shot of the babies face but our little one had it’s little fists right around it’s face.

This week Lillian and I also had a baby dream on the same night. I dreamed that I was delivering the baby in a foreign country while helping another young mom deliver her baby.  It made me thankful for our modern hospitals and wonderful birthing suits here in Sioux Falls. Lillian then woke up and told me her dream. She said that we went to the hospital and didn’t tell her. When she did get to come up to the hospital the baby was already talking to her. Oh fun.

As the weekly countdown quickly turns into days… I am thankful for this new life and the responsibility that comes with it.

Funny Kid Quotes, Kids

Leeland & Baby

Leeland has been super involved in this pregnancy.  I have never had this old of child, or this verbal, while being pregnant before and boy does that make a difference.  It also helps his interest that his head is the exact height of my ever growing belly. Daily Leeland does the following things:

  • Come up and kiss my belly
  • Hug my belly and then try to wrestle the baby from the outside.
  • Say “Hi Baby” in a very big voice. (The baby will either know Leeland well or maybe be a bit afraid of him.
  • Declare that the baby is a boy and talk in great lengths about how he wants and needs a brother. He needs another “worker” in his room for clean up. That he already has two sisters. That dad doesn’t count because he isn’t little. Yes, Leeland has thought this one out. (For the record we don’t know the gender and won’t find out until the baby is here)
  • Asking if the baby is hungry when I take my vitimins and supplements
  • Ask if the baby is coming out
  • Ask why it is taking so long

The other day he was sitting on my lap and he started naming different parts of my body: eyes, forehead, hands, fingers, ears, mouth, baby (stomach), and yes, when he looked at my breasts he simply said, “Feeders! Right mom these are the feeders for the baby?” Oh the joy of a three year old knowing lots and lots of things. Breast feeding should be filled with lots of fun stories.


The Car



At Christmas Norah got this neat Little Tikes Car. It has been a favorite in our house lately.  We removed the carpet rug in the living room and let them have at it.  Norah can only make it go backwards but still has fun. Lillian has figured out  how to get a free ride as well.  Norah usually likes to wear a hat/crown in the car when she drives. I think she is trying to wear a helmet like Lillian wears when she does her bike.



I still have to get a video of Lillian spinning Norah around at high rates of speed and Norah loving it! Maybe we have a future race car driver on our hands. DSC_0002_007


* Chris and shown me how to resize our camera pictures so I can now blog again.  Laura we should talk!- Let the blogging continue!


Love for our cousins

Lillian loves her cousins and on Monday they came to our house so she was extra excited.  She plays so well with them and she can’t wait until she can play with them again. They laugh and giggle and act silly.  We played with play dough, ate and ate and ate… and went to the park! It doesn’t get better than that! This summer we got to visit arrowhead park and have a picnic, ride the trolley and eat downtown and visit Palisades Park.  Not to bad for such a hot summer.

We can’t wait until our next cousin arrives in December!

Crafty Moments, Kids

Cute Valentines

I waited to post this because I didn’t want to spoil the surprise of our valentines this year. On Tuesday, Lillian and I loaded up our bags of valentines and did some delivering. It was fun to get to make the different stops and talk to the people we delivered them too!

I found both of these on Pinterest. These are the websites and they give pretty good directions to do both &

They were both pretty easy. For people who didn’t live in town we mailed a flat version. The sucker valentine turned into a bouquet of heart flowers on cardstock and the kisses valentine turned into a cute bookmark!

Here are some pictures of Lillian from that day!

Lillian worked hard decorating the bags that held the valentines. She enjoyed using stamp markers for the 1st time.
My big girl!
Off we go to deliver