Mama of many

I have been blessed by Charlotte. I mentioned to her that I would love a neckalce with all the kids’ initials stamped in metal. And Voila! I absolutely love it.It is everything I wanted. It’s beautiful and delicate, but strong.  I love every detail about it. And I love her heart in making it for me! 20157263_309026699558048_4726096687180782400_o

Come take a walk

Come take a walk with me around the farm!

Benja loves to pick cukes!

Benja loves to pick cukes!

Those are some monster onions, Jack!

Those are some monster onions, Jack!

Sweet flowers, sweeter girl!

Sweet flowers, sweeter girl!

Gloria loves to throw corn to the chickens!

Gloria loves to throw corn to the chickens!

Picking the last of the strawberries. Popping them in their mouths!

Picking the last of the strawberries. Popping them in their mouths!

Feeding mama's baby Americauna chicks. They should be laying soon!

Feeding mama’s baby Americauna chicks. They should be laying soon!

Sunflowers for my boy with a sunny disposition.

Sunflowers for my boy with a sunny disposition.

Reunion

IMG_7496Originally we planned to have the Schultz family reunion up in Wisconsin at Jeremie’s sister’s house. IMG_7462But because Jeremie’s mom was hospitalized at the last minute, everyone decided to come to Tennessee instead. IMG_7509Yeah! For not having to drive the big camper up Hwy 57 through construction! IMG_7389And all those cousins and aunts and uncles were so fun to have at the farm!IMG_7423 Everyone tag teamed for food prep and clean up and visiting with Grandma Schultz, since she was too weak to come over. IMG_7401Jeremie ran like a little energizer bunny, running games, setting things up, swimming with the kids, catching up with his sibs. IMG_7439So many cousins…there are 27 grandkids in all. IMG_7457The oldest one couldn’t make it, with his new wife.IMG_7450 But what a sight to see all the family singing and playing praise to Jesus during worship on Sunday!IMG_7385 We do this every other year. IMG_7395I know it’s hard for people to work out school schedules and work vacations but we all leave thinking we should do this more often! IMG_7386

Summer fun!

IMG_7226Here at the Funny Farm we try to be intentional with our time. We do A LOT of work. But we also enjoy A LOT of fun. I think that’s why are kids are such cheerful workers. They realize we all do it together and then we all have fun together. IMG_7230We also believe in teaching life skills to all the kids. And we start ’em out young, lol! While they are working on a project that will result in hours of fun family time, it hardly seems like work or learning, but it is! Measure once, cut twice! IMG_7253

All I need to know about marriage I learned from the back of a two seater bike

Nuggets of Wisdom

IMG_0560I came away from the homeschool convention with a few nuggets of wisdom.

#1. Children need laps, not apps.

#2. Our goal is not to raise smart children. Our goal is to raise Godly parents for the next generation.

#3. The purpose of school is not to train our kids for more school. The purpose of school is to train kids for life.

#4. Find the way your child is smart. Then cultivate it into greatness.IMG_5178

Burgess Falls 2017

IMG_5829This is the third time I have been to the falls in Cookville, Tn and I’ve never seen the river running so high or fast! IMG_5831I warned the kids not to fall in! This mama wasn’t about to jump in to save them :)IMG_5874 Gloria loved to climb on the rocks and splash in the water. IMG_5842When she wasn’t riding in my Ergo, or being held by Tommy she was trying to throw herself down the side of the cliff to get back to the water.IMG_5867 It was a beautiful, cool, breezy summer day and I’m so glad we took the time to stop by our favorite hiking spot!IMG_5877

Six mile loop

IMG_20170506_192022647Long family bike rides! These long, cool spring evenings have been so great for bike riding! We get the whole gang on board and off we go! We’ve visited friends that live 11 miles away. The kids have ridden with Jeremie over 13 miles. Today we just did the 6 mile loop. This takes us along a back country road. Over a deep culvert, up some steep hills and through bendy twists and turns. IMG_20170506_193347167_HDRTime spent with family is so important. This is the time of relationship building. This is the time of showing what’s really important, what our priorities are. This is the time of enjoying God’s creation and reveling in his blessings and goodness in allowing us to live in the country. We are literally living our dream. HIs goodness knows no bounds!

Think of me

Do you love introducing your children to things that are special to you? I certainly do! I have very few vivid memories from my childhood, but what I do remember I love to share with my kids. Whether it’s stories of my late grandma hoarding spices in the pantry and always having a “wrinkled, but clean” kleenex in her purse or taking them to the campground in South Haven, Mi where I camped every summer as a child and picked blueberries and met their father, I delight in sharing these experiences with my kids. So I was beyond excited when Jeremie surprised me and the girls with tickets to see the Phantom of the Opera! I have seen this twice in Chicago. Once, as a girl, and once, with him. We couldn’t orchestrate a trip up north, but it was being put on at a concert hall in Birmingham, Al. IMG_20170406_121358999The girls had never been to Alabama before, either, so that was a fun adventure as well. I tell you, the sky is just bigger and more gorgeous in Alabama! So this performance of the “Phantom” was awesome! The music, the scenery, the music, the costumes, the music!!! We belted out the show tunes on the way home and have been singing them ever since. It’s really fun that I have the piano music so we can play and sing at the same time. I used to do that for hours with my cousins and friends when I was young. It was a long day, but it was filled with great music, lots of loud laughter, sister stories, mom memories, good food and lots of love! IMG_20170406_153123552