Pictorial review

Confession: I don’t often do it this way, but to bring you up to speed on the last few months I’m going to just this once. In brief then, here’s a photographical run-down of our summer.

Let me start with breakfast. When you have half a dozen children, the simple pleasures of life such as waking up in the morning and frying yourself an egg become much more complicated.


Still a pleasure though. Speaking of food, I had a brief unfortunate experience with kale smoothies. After ten days I decided I adore my greens but would rather be pureed myself than drink them that way anymore.


We spent a lot of lunchtimes in this kind of paradise.


We did a little gardening, but not much. Mostly I grew kids and flowers.


Aarick was my right-hand man. It hurts, how fast he’s growing up. This summer he got good with a BB gun and a swim stroke and a vacuum cleaner.


And Regan. You know. This kinda thing all summer.


He is hands down the toughest kid I’ve ever raised but I bet he makes me laugh every single day. When he was bored he got out the dictionary and amused himself by using up every letter on the Scrabble board.


Kelly learned to comb her hair all by herself (if we’re staying home for the day), and grew zinnias from her own saved seeds, and turned six, and became a fabulous little playmate and babysitter.


She got a kitten.


Or maybe Ryan got a kitten. The jury’s still out on that.


No, Ryan got a haircut. I thought I’d hate him with short hair and instead I found him irresistible. (I hate when that happens.)


He is a good firefighter. I think of this on 9-11 and am especially proud of his commitment to community life and safety. We liked watching him train.


Somehow during the summer my baby grew from a sleeping infant to an exploring adventurer. Oh my heart…


If you ever want to bless a busy mom, send your teenaged daughter or friend to help her out for a few hours. This happened to me. Kaitlyn came once a week all summer, and Annie was hired for several hours by my secret sister from church. This photo shows the day we cleaned the whole house together and drank iced coffee.


Our two big ideas this summer were family volunteerism and family excursions.


We got to see the Liberty Bell once (do not pass or stow) and my grandma twice.


And then this tiny baby… this precious miracle niece whose mother recovered from Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and gave birth to a darling… came to see us. She is protesting the camera.


God is good!

There are many pictures I can’t show you because the twins’ beautiful faces are on them. At the end of summer we packed up their luggage with all their favorite stuff –


And the three big kids went off to school –


And life turned a whole new corner. I won’t lie to you: I’m spending a lot of time breathing, and snuggling this baby.


Tell me a few things you loved this summer.

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7 years ago

Glory! I met and have been praying daily for your precious lymphoma survivor and am SO grateful to God for sending her a baby!

Also, love seeing the shine on your face and the faces of your family.

One thing I have been loving so much this summer: being on the same side of the ocean as my family, and especially getting to know my baby nephew.

Deborah H
7 years ago

so much beauty here. it just makes me cry a little. Jean, and all that. and I don’t know you, but I really like you, and your family is just beautiful. thanks for sharing a little piece of your life here with me. that part about Ryan’s hair is just hilarious. isn’t marriage fun? except when it’s hard. God bless you as you snuggle that baby and keep breathing.

7 years ago

I enjoyed the peek into your summer.

I admire you and your beautiful family.

p.s. are you and Jean beginning to look more alike these days?? 🙂 I especially see it on the picture of the two of you together with your baby girls!

7 years ago

I loved all the hours we spent reading together on the couch this summer. Sometimes we do less reading in the summer but this year we did more. Love enjoying words and stories read outloud with everyone sprawled around the room. Well, except for the two-year-old who just might get bored and decide to go outside and play in the sandbox.

I’ve been thinking of you. Glad to have an update.

Enjoy those snuggles

7 years ago

It’s so good to hear about Jean having a baby! Your little munchkins are all SO darling. I am sorry you had to say good-bye to your foster babies. We had a summer crampacked with all sorts of thing and it went faster than any summer I ever remember. We spent more time together as a family, which was good…camping, going to the Oregon coast and zoo, etc.

7 years ago

Wow, says Elia looking over my shoulder, she must really like eggs. 😀

I loved not living the chaos and exhaustion of last summer, the heat that made the garden flourish, turning 30 and realizing I’m surrounded by more love and friendship than I gave credit.

It’s good to see you back in this space. I thought of you often over the summer.

Lucinda J
7 years ago

Oh how beautiful. God is good, and looking at your pictures and hearing about your life, I see some of his goodness.

7 years ago

My goodness, your children are all such cute little Zooks!! ? Loved all the pictures!
Our summer was filled with baseball, a new grandson, yard work, shopping and wedding prep and our daughter got married in our yard September 3!!
I love summer!! ?

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