Amelia {Month 3}

Dear Amelia,

My beautiful summer baby! I can’t believe it is September and you are already 3 months old.

This last month you went to your first Fair and week long vacation! You did pretty well in the car rides and were often walked and soothed by your aunts and uncles.

You smile now. Mommy gets the most smiles but you generously smile to your siblings, daddy and others. You work so hard to make sounds. Some “ahhs” and “ohhs” but I’m sure more are coming. You are on the verge of giggling and man is that going to be fun.

Recently you have liked facing out while I wear you in the moby wrap. You think moving in tandem with Mom is the best. You also like the bouncer and floor mat for a good 10-20 minutes most time.

The mobile continues to be a favorite. You love to kick and stretch! I often think of baby’s days that are just full of little bursts of things. They are a small portion where Mom, eating and sleeping is still then majority.

Speaking of sleeping you have been doing some awesome long couple hour naps in the morning! This homeschool mama is hopeful that this will align with our homeschool day. Sleeping is varied. You sometime wake up every 2-3 hours or go longer . It just all depends.

We love you SO much Amelia Joy!!





Today marks the date of 11 years of marriage. On Saturday we got to go on a date over lunch with Amelia as our side kick!

We were on vacation and so we tried a cute little restaurant nearby. We had just ordered when we look at Amelia and see that she is totally pooping in her car seat. She gives us the biggest smile. I decide that I should change her before he food gets here when I see that the poop has exploded out of her diaper on to her outfit and over the car seat. We quickly go to the bathroom were I ,and then Chris comes , to clean up the mess.

This is life right now. We are 11 years in and still in and still in the thick of it. Marriage is work but worth the work you put into it! I’m not sure what I saw down the road 11 years ago when I married Chris. But I wouldn’t change anything . I am thankful for the man that God led me to marry and more than blessed with the family we are raising together.

Love you Chris!!!

Funny Kid Quotes

Funny Things they say: Leeland edition

While the kids were asking about if they could watch the video zaboomafoo on amazon prime.

Lillian: can you search to see if we can watch zaboomafoo?

Me: nope it’s not free

Leeland: can’t you unfree it?

Me: nope

Leeland: can you cut it free?

Me: nope it doesn’t work like that.

Leeland: mom it’s coming fast … the hunger

Leeland will often say I love you at very random times. Here is a snippet of a conversation from the other day.

Leeland: mom I pooped…. mom it stinks…. mom I love you!!

While coming home from the hot air balloon launch we found out they would not launch because of weather and storms. We said they could not go up because it would not be safe.

Leeland: We could go to cherry berry, that would be a safe place!

Love the logic of a 3 year old!


Cabin Time Then & Now {a list of B’s}

I found another blog post from the past (summer of 2014) that never was published! I thought I would add in our latest trip to the cabin.



We spent lots of time on the beach this time. We met friends up at Itasca and spent the afternoon playing on the beach making sand castles and swimming. The kids played down by the dock at the cabin building sand creations. Then the last day we were there we took the kids to School Craft Lake to play on the beach. Chris and the kids continued to build on a sand castle someone left behind. By the end it was complete with a moat!

Having a baby up at the cabin always changes things. I’m a little more tied to the land than the water. We did manage one boat ride wearing that crazy infant life jacket!

For many years there was a lovely couple , Mike & Mel, that owned
Emmaville. Emmaville is a little restaurant, gas station, and store by the cabin. Mel would bake Norah’s birthday cakes, we would stop in for breakfast and eat their yummy cinnamon rolls. Friendships were forged and they were definitely our kids buddies. This trip I was kind of sad because this was the first baby that Mel hadn’t held. As luck would have it, Chris ran into Mel at Walmart. She invited us to their new lake house. Mel made cookies and held Amelia. We talked and toured their awesome house. I guess we are truly lake people now because now we have lake friends.



This year Lillian tried tubing for the 1st time by herself.

Chris caught Northerns and Bass

Norah took a few naps

Lillian took pictures of all of us in the boat

I felt more at peace out in the lake this time




This was on our summer to do list ( and probably on Chris and My to do list since we have been married. ) Bingo at the Mantrap Conservation club.

It’s 25 cents a card

The girls got bored after the first few cards and choose to work on sticker books instead

Leeland played bingo in the Moby wrap. Youngest player there:)

Grandpa won the blackout game!



The best firework show

Family time

Norah’s Birthday celebration

The weather was the best and so beautiful!



Amelia {Month 2}

Dear Amelia,
You are already two months old. This summer has really flown by!
You started to smile at about 6 weeks old and make that "ahhh" sound. You are tracking things with your eyes and being more focused as different people hold you.

There has been lots of little girls born at church so you will have endless playmates in the future.

In July we started venturing out more. We took our first trip to the cabin. You did great only having to stop once during the six hour trip. You are by far the best car seat baby we have had yet!

We have also gone to:

  • The spray park
  • Plays in the park
  • Grandma Wilken's house
  • Church
  • Mops bible study
  • And countless other play dates

You have your sleepy days and your fussy days. On your fussy days we walk around with you and bounce you trying to make you feel better. Although if you were sleepy all the time or quite it would be easy to put you down. This way we always are staying connected😉

Bath times are turning into a favorite activity. You seem to like your baths. You smile and kick and almost giggled the other day. I see lots of trips to the Luverne pool in your future!

We love you so much Amelia Joy!


PS. At your 2 month appointment you weighed 11 lbs 4 oz and was 22 inches in length. The girl can eat😊

July 24th

Seems like a lifetime but it’s just 4 years!


Today is July 24th- a day that marked and changed my family. It was four years ago today that we were at a lake home on vacation with the Wilken family! Four years ago that after a bacon filled breakfast my dad took Lillian and Norah on a bike ride and sang them songs. Four years ago that after cleaning out a garage dad, two of my sisters and my niece decided to swim across the lake. It was four years ago that four of them went across but only three came back.

And like the scripture that my family has found comfort in on that day and the years passed

Exodus 2: 10 ” Later, when the boy was older, his mother brought him back to Pharaoh’s daughter, who adopted him as her own son. The princess named him Moses,a for she explained, “I lifted him out of the water.”

Dad was went from swimming to being lifted out of the water by the arms of Jesus!
Many things happen in four years and has in the life of our family. Between my sister and I we have birthed four beautiful babies. Their whole life time has been marked with the absences of their Grandpa Wilken.  I often wonder about what Grandpa would do with all these boys. About how Leeland and dad would have been dangerous buddies- with their love for food and conversation.

This year the grief is different- it feels more normal on this July 24th – instead of dreading the one year anniversary as I first did – this one I had to think ” it this the right day? It was on July 24th right?” I even went back and read old emails from people from the time that dad died. I liked to read what they were saying and the emotional tied to it. I like to remember because that day was important testimony of God’s faithfulness to our family.

Lamentations 3:22-23 “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

Although grief at day one and grief at four years look different , it is still grief. I still miss my dad, I still wish he was here for my kids as their grandpa, I still miss his questions, I still wish that mom had a helpmate to weather th day to day life, I long to see his smile or hear his voice.

Throughout today I will think about dad. I will show the kids some old videos. Part of my family will gather together and eat sweet corn together  for supper in memory of dad. We will do our yearly balloon release and we will remember dad! Today will still be partly normal but lived differently because we have all been marked and changed.

Other Dad post:



2014 & 2014



Lillian is all about …

I was going through drafts of blog posts the other day and found this one that was never published about Lillian from when she was three years old in May of 2012. thought that I would do a bit of comparison between what I wrote a couple of years ago and currently. Lillian thought it was pretty funny when I read it to her.


Dora– She has Dora socks, shoes, shirts, a purse & even underwear (tho they are not getting much use yet )

Eating-Her favorite food currently is: daddy’s bread, toasted ( which she calls crunched), little oranges, strawberries, popcorn, eggs, hot dogs, and anything at the Grandparents houses.

Writing-Lillian is a writer.  She loves little notebooks and writing with a pen.   She spends tons of time writing little notes to us and folding them in half to make them like a letter.


Moana-Lillian first watched this Disney movie when we were at the hospital when Amelia was born. She watched it with her cousins! Since then she has seen it 2 more times and loves it. After we watched it as a family and she preceded to ask us what our favorite song was , favorite character, funny moment, etc. then Norah got a moana lego set for her birthday and that has only spurred more Fun and fascination. Lillian says this movie was as good as Frozen.

Eating– Lillian likes fettuccine Alfredo, scones, tortillas with peanut butter and cinnamon sugar, pickles, egg salad, Colby cheese, salami and most any kind of dessert.

Audio books-Lillian spends countless hours listening to audio books in her room. We always said that when she learns to ready we will never see her again. Well since fluent self reading isn’t quite there she has turned into the biggest audio book reader. We currently check them out from the library, download from audible, listen on hoopla digital, and buy them when they complete a reading curriculum book.  Some of her favorite audio books are: Anne of Green Gables, The Secret Garden, Charlotte’s web, and The Mouse and the Motorcycle series.


This Weekend

This weekend was another lovely weekend of time spent at home!


We started with a fun homeschool field trip to a Stendland’s Dairy farm. Chris was able to join us and boy was he glad he did. We saw a farm fully functioning with only about 7 employees and a bunch of robots! Plus the kids got to bottle feed calfs what is better than that?


We introduced the creek at Mary Jo Arboretum to Chris.  We had been on Monday and it was so much fun. Kids played in the water, built mud sculptures and donut holes, and Leeland threw rocks. This was Amelia’s sort of fussy day so it also involved constantly soothing a child.  The creek was pretty busy that day in terms of events. We watched a family photo shoot, senior picture shoot and a wedding set up. We were almost those people across the bank – with a crying baby and swim suit clad kids- that were the backdrop to their wedding. We decided to leave when the guest started arriving 😉

Also after reading the Magnolia story about Chip and Joanna Gaines we have been watching lots of Fixer Upper. There has been lots of talk about taking out walls and changing rooms in our house. Most of it is future stuff but we did decided to tackle the fire place and paint the brass black. We also want to change out the mantle with something more rustic.

Saturday we did his and hers shopping. Chris and big kids went to Menards and Amelia and I went to Targetand the Dollar Tree.  I had two missions. Buy activities for our upcoming van trip (blog post yet to come) and buy decorations for two campers bunks for Royal Family Kids Camp. Successful trip!


Church and inside projects and lots of cute Amelia pictures. Can’t believe she is already 6 weeks old. She has developed some serious cheeks.


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.



Norah turns S I X


Dear Norah,

Today is the day that you have been counting down to for quite some time. Yesterday you wanted to do everything fast: eat fast, go to bed quickly just so your birthday would come faster.  You are just so excited!

Norah you have grown up so much this past year! You went from saying sounds to reading books. You have grown taller and lost your first tooth.  You ask so many questions and want to know the answers.

God had given you such a spirit of generosity and compassion for others.  When a sibling is sad over not getting something you most likely will share what you have to make them feel better!


You love love love your baby sister Amelia. You love to hold her and give her kisses. You have even gotten up early so you can have time to hold her before your siblings get up. ( which is saying something because you like to sleep in.)

Your imagination is the best! You love to think of things to play. This summer you created a fort inbetween some pine trees that had entertained you and others for hours. You sing lots and can memorize song so fast.

You love to eat cherry tomatoes, watermelon, and anything bread like. Legos and American girl Dolls are are your favorite thing to play in the house, while you listen to audio books with your sister.

You are my super passionate, know-what-you-want-girl. God has blessed our family with you life and I am so thankful. We love you so much Norah Reagan!

Lots of Love,