Wednesday, April 29, 2015

we have eggs!

Turns out our Ritz is a she, and not a he, which we, for some reason, assumed. 
We found her sitting on a nest, completely full of eggs (more than 20!). 
We were all surprised, and the kids were thrilled! 
Hailey said "Mom! I want to eat one of those right now!" 
We didn't keep that bog batch because I wasn't sure how long they had been there. What a sneaky duck she is! 
 It's so cool to have daily fresh eggs though!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

pictures of the day

 Kalli loves bubbles...
Benny loves tractors!

Friday, April 24, 2015

emissions test...and some change

Our van. 
We bought it used with low kms, and it's now got 310,000 kms under it's belt, among other little problems. 
It doesn't owe us anything. We haven't had to do any repairs, aside from some new tires a few years back. 
Last week, it was time to do the dreaded emissions test before we could renew our plates. 
Multiple codes were popping up on the reader before we even attempted the test, and clearing the codes wasn't working. 
Matt scheduled an appointment at a shop to get it all fixed up to pass the test, and they quoted us at about $500. 
But, it's better than shelling out a bunch more for another (new to us) van. 
Matt took it home, and did some more investigating, and it turned out to be all electrical. Some of the wires above the dash were very corroded and causing all of the codes! 
He did some magic, and replaced a small $30 part, and the codes were gone. 
He brought the van back to the shop for our scheduled service appointment, and they didn't know what he did to fix it. 
Kind of scary that they were going to charge us so much money to fix something that wasn't even broken!

After passing the e-test, Matt called me up and said he was so excited that it was a much cheaper day than he thought, so he decided to replace our radio in the van. He found one on clearance, and came home to install it right away. 

Turns out, the reason our CD player stopped working about two and half years ago, is because some little trouble maker (I'm guessing Hailey) was using it as a money bank. 
The ashtray was full of coins again after taking it apart. That explains it.

Two mysteries solved in one day. 
We're on a roll!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

date night!

Date nights don't happen much. 
Actually, they happen about three times a year - our birthdays, and Anniversary. 
This night was my birthday date! 
Matt took me shopping and out for dinner and dessert. 
My mom and dad watched the kids for us, and we were able to take our time. 

He didn't give me a birthday gift, because he wanted to get me a fancy lens for my camera, that had an even fancier price tag. 
I didn't let him get it. 
 Instead, he took me to the camera store and we would look together for some accessories. 

Turns out, he ordered me that fancy lens anyway!
What a guy. 

After we shopped, we went to eat, and then got a couple groceries. I couldn't help but grab a couple things for the kids while we were out, and then we stopped again for dessert!
 Oh boy. 
We ate more than we could handle. 
This is the best shot of us we could mange to get. 
We tried! 
I'm thankful for our few and far between date nights! 

Monday, April 20, 2015

the wake up kiss

 Ben is such a riot. 
He's so happy, all the time, and loves playing. If the girls are laughing at something he starts this extremely fake, and over-the-top laugh that makes everyone laugh even harder. Even if he has no idea what they're laughing at!
I wish I could just sit around all day and document every second of every day. These pictures were five minutes of watching. Ben and Matt were playing while Matt was trying to just relax and try to get a little cat nap in. Here's when he {tried} to close his eyes. 
Ben kept kissing him and kissing him until he got back up. It was pretty funny.
This little boy has us all completely wrapped around his finger.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

food intolerance test

Hanna's reflux flared back up for a few days, and it really worried us. We're always afraid of the unknown with this kid. Who knows what her little body is doing in there, where we can't see. It's scary. 

She's been off her Prevacid now for almost a year, so what a disappointment when she started getting sick again. The amount that comes out of her little body is frightening.
We do what we can. And I feel good knowing that we're doing everything we can to figure her out. 
It came to our attention that there's a test available for testing for food intolerances. (Thanks Uncle Dave!) 
It's not an allergy test, but an intolerance test. Just a blood test. 
A doctor has to give permission to have the test done, so I brought Hanna in to see our family doctor. He recommended a different test. One that doesn't just test the foods, but tests the chemicals and additives in the foods as well. I think this is where Hanna's problem lies, so there was no question whether to have this test done or not.
We got her in the same day, and she was rockstar with the blood test. Now, we just wait. We'll hear from them in about a week, and depending on what the results show, we will start working with her doctor to get her on the right vitamins, supplements, or medications depending on what kind of foods have to be eliminated or prepared differently. 
I'm praying for the results to show something.

Cross your fingers that this gives us some answers!  

Monday, April 13, 2015

dirt dont hurt

He just looked so cute in the duck pen, playing with the bunny, so I grabbed the camera. He walked over to the oh so nasty duck water, and I said to him "What are you doing...??" and he gave me this face. 
Looks like trouble to me...
Oh yeah. 
There it is. 
Why, Benny!

Friday, April 10, 2015


Eight years ago today we welcomed Gracie Lynn into our lives. 
It was the best day. Our lives changed so much in that instant, and every night I thank God for giving me such an amazing little girl to have in our lives. 
 She's the most caring, and thoughtful kid I know. 
She's never just thinking of herself.
 She's extremely goofy, and has a hilarious sense of humour. She's always coming up with riddles, or jokes, and always making us laugh.
 She is wise beyond her years. Some days I feel like she has an old soul. She thinks alot about everything going on around her, and has always acted very mature for her age.
 At the same time though, she's still very young at heart. She's gullible, and trusts that what she's being told is the truth. 
Bubbles are her favourite thing to do outside, and she collects, collects, collects! She collects anything that she thinks is "rare" or very "unique".
She's a good girl.
 Some days she'd rather draw by herself, or make up a game to play with props and everything instead of playing with her sisters. Of course they're all invited to play when she's done, but she enjoys the planning, putting things together, and coming up with all of the genius ideas all on her own.
 She's extremely sensitive. 
She takes friendships very seriously, and nothing breaks her heart more than knowing she's disappointed someone.
 She's a very grateful kid. 
She is always the first to thank us after a day out, or after dinner, and even appreciates just a sunny day. 
She loves life.
Her prayers every night include thanking God for the sun to light our days. (This is a prime example of where the old soul comes in.)

 She had a great today, and got calls from family, and even got to go shopping with my mom. Just the two of them. What a treat!
She deserves it.
 We made her wait until after dinner to open her gift from us, and boy, was it painful for her to wait!
 After opening up a strap first, then some picks, and lastly some strings...
 We revealed a new guitar! 
Like, a real guitar. A nice one. 
She is so excited, and Matt has been at it teaching her the ways since she opened it. 
 Happy Birthday sweet, sweet girl. 
We love you!! 

Saturday, April 4, 2015

what a cold

We had a cold go around the house, that only seemed to target the kids. Hailey started with it, and passed it to Hanna, who then passed it to Gracie and Ben. 
Gracie and Ben seemed to get the brunt of it. The fever hung around for almost 3 days, only letting up while on Tylenol. 
Gracie was happy to hang out, be lazy, and let it pass, but poor Ben was not happy - at all. 

He spent most of the past 2 days sleeping, which isn't like him at all. 
Although the fever was gone, he still obviously wasn't right. 

Today, he woke up happy. 
Very happy! He responded with a big "yeah!" and smile when I asked him if he wanted to eat breakfast. 
I think he's the cutest little thing when he wakes up. 
I don't know if it's the sleepy eyes, or the messy hair, or his big plump lips, but man, the kid is cute!
 I'm glad everyone's back to normal! 
I will also mention that I always forget how big of a help Gracie is until she's on sick leave. 
Don't know what I'd do without her.