and laughter too…

I couldn’t resist also sharing these shots of a boy and his dad that I was able to capture last week at the Chicago Botanic Gardens. The pure joy and love that radiates from their faces makes me smile every time I look at them.

DSC05208 DSC05207 DSC05203 DSC05202 DSC05194 DSC05191And then these of me and my oldest boy, who is growing up so quickly. But even when you are a great big boy you can’t escape your momma’s lovin’.DSC05251 DSC05254 DSC05270 These boys, they make me laugh and cry, and yes sometimes (umm, often times) they bring me to my knees. But they and their daddy know how to make me laugh. Beauty and laughter…these are food for my soul, gifts straight from Heaven.

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nourishment for the soul

After the long Chicago winter, which has seemed unwilling to release it’s grasp on our region these past weeks, as hard as Spring tries to come, we are finally seeing real warmth and growth outside. Last week we made a trip to the Chicago Botanic Gardens to drink in some of the beauty of colors and blooms and nourish our souls in nature.

DSC05099Who thought lettuce could be so beautiful!

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Someone was a little hungry. This container was overflowing with lettuce and green onions and flowers.DSC05125 DSC05132DSC05152 DSC05154 DSC05165 DSC05168 DSC05179

A somewhat unsuccessful attempt at a family portrait…someone was a little cranky by this point!DSC05162It started drizzling toward the end of our time, but the lighting was amazing and the colors just popped! Afternoons spent in the gardens help me breath just a bit deeper and my soul feels lighter. So thankful for these hours well spent!

At the Zoo…a Party for the Planet

DSC03586 DSC03589 DSC03601 DSC03609 DSC03610 DSC03629 DSC03632 DSC03642 DSC03653 DSC03655 DSC03663 DSC03672 DSC03673Last Sunday was a beautiful day, if a bit chilly, and so we decided to head for the zoo for their annual “Party for the Planet” for Earth Day. We actually didn’t see many animals (just some wild children – see the tiger and “Sonic the Hedgehog” above) since the zoo had a huge amount of flooding from the week before. Many of the animals were off exhibit and several of the houses were closed. But we still enjoyed ourselves. The boys especially loved the face painting and the chance to build animal houses. I enjoyed the flowers and the smiles on my boys faces. We are all looking forward to more outside time this summer and many more trips to the zoo!

These Days of Winter

While it no longer looks like winter here (but they say we’ll wake up to snow in the morning), a few weeks ago we had a bunch of the white stuff. While I have in no way been complaining about the second unusually mild winter in a row this year, the males in my house were overjoyed to finally have some white stuff on the ground with which to play and are then quite saddened by the rain which has melted it all away.

Two Saturday’s ago we all had a blast sledding for a few hours in the cold sunshine.

DSC01926 DSC01934 DSC01944 DSC01995But since we haven’t had much opportunity for outdoor play in the snow, what with lots of rain and mild temperatures, we’ve had to find other ways to keep busy…

DSC01889 DSC01895like water colors. The boys and I had a blast making these. I saw the idea here.

And then we were on to messier endeavors…

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DSC01907 DSC01909Life with these two crazy ones is so precious. Loud, wild, exhausting…yes! But so so beautiful even in all the crazies. They are full of LIFE and I love them so. And that man who is far more adventurous with them than I even am? There are no words to say how much I love him.

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Thank you, God, for these precious ones you’ve given to me.