A Winter Walk

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It’s easier to tolerate winter when the sun shines and when you have a dog to walk!

Fishing vs Catching

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“A bad day fishing is better than a good day at work!”

These two with their O’Pa at a favorite pond are simply happy to be casting and reeling and catching little biters.

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Alstromerias in Pink

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Alstromerias

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Flowers make me happy, especially in the bleak winter days when the sun doesn’t shine for weeks on end!

Alstromerias can be found in a variety of colors in our local florists’ shops and gardening stores. These are a bright spot on a January day!

Ste. Genevieve, Missouri

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The front doors of the Inn St. Gemme-Beauvais on Main Street

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Beautiful details in the Inn — Marie Louise Room

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The gravel road to the Mississippi River and Tower Rock

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Vineyards at Weingarten, Missouri in the evening sun

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Lined Up

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Where did Summer go?

The watering cans, well-used, gave drinks to so many flowers and veggies

planted on our deck.

Now we’ve picked our last cherry tomatoes,

watered the impatiens and petunias for the last times,

and prepare to winterize soon.

But not too soon.

Please.

Give us more beautiful Autumn days to sprinkle thirsty flowers,

though spindly and fading,

just to enjoy the task.

Rest in Peace – Auf Weidersehen

Today is All Saints’ Day on the Christian church calendar. It’s a day to celebrate those sinner-saints who have gone before us to their heavenly rest.

During this beautiful Autumn season I’ve spent some time walking and photographing in Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery, St Louis, MO, not far from where we live.

When my parents moved from Ohio to the St Louis area in early 2015, they changed their plans so that this national cemetery would be their final resting place.

Our dad is now at perfect peace and has been committed to JBNC since his recent passing from this earth. It’s a sad/happy time for us. Sad because we miss him so much–almost daily visiting, laughing, eating ice cream together, singing and listening to polka music, hearing his great stories about family and World War II and travel experiences and more.

We’re happy and comforted to know that we’ll see him in heaven someday, because we believe Jesus’ promise that’s written in John 11:25-26: “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.”

God blessed Dad with almost 95 years of life on this earth, with a beautiful and loving bride of 70 years plus, and with a caring family and many friends. For all this, we’re so thankful.

See you later, Dad.

“In Christ alone my hope is found, He is my light, my strength, my song.”

“For every sin on Him was laid; here in the death of Christ I live!”

 

Monarchs Have Migrated to Mexico

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This is the last Monarch to visit our butterfly garden in 2016. We enjoyed each and every one that we saw, and thank God for His creation and their beauty! The monarchs enjoyed our butterfly weed, milkweed plants, and butterfly bushes (this one is named “Ruby”) as well as the zinnias and impatiens blooming here.

Read more about Monarchs and their migration here and on other sites that you find when searching Google for “monarchs” and “migration.”

Remember to save your flower seeds and plant in the early spring to help make your environment more butterfly friendly!

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/03/160314-monarchs-mexico-endangered-rare-butterflies-animals/

A Very Hungry Caterpillar

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Little sister brought her baby brother her favorite bookThe Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle–and he was completely mesmerized by it, as you can see!

The cocoon and hat were crocheted by Lake Effect Creations. You can find her Etsy shop online at etsy.com

Isn’t he adorable in it? A beautiful creation in God’s world!

Zzzz.

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Siblings in Summer

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She Flew

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The sun began to set.

And then she flew.

Tiny dancer!

Tiny Details

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These are a few of my favorite things!

Eyelashes. Ears. Fingers. Toes. Baby skin.

Tiny noses, lips, and chins.

What a precious miracle he is!

These Eyes…These Eyelashes

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“The eyes are the windows to the soul.” ~ English Proverb

Dear little one, I wonder what I look like to your eyes! I love looking into yours!

 

Daddy, Hold My Hand

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Parenting isn’t “a walk in the park”! But this daddy makes it look easy as he and little one reach for each other’s hand and walk on a mild winter afternoon.

So little. So big. Looking up. Looking down. Reaching up. Reaching down. So trusting. So giving.

It’s great to see a father’s love and a daughter’s trust. May it grow and grow, bloom and blossom!

 

This Dancer Shines

This young miss SHINES at whatever she does! She dances, she sings, and she excels in middle school too! She has love in her heart that radiates to everyone around her, and that love beams through her beautiful blue eyes. She shares Jesus’ love with those around her, both near and far, in family, church and school family, and mission opportunities.

I captured her sweet personality along with a bit of her impish nature at various locations for her headshots — these samples are from inside a horse barn to outdoors on a snow-covered path. I do have a favorite! Each is very different with the natural light settings — from cool to very warm — that we found along the way.

With a smile and sparkling eyes like these, I know whatever photos her parents submit for her 2016 Muny Opera application headshots will shine for the decision-makers. Better yet, I know she’ll nail her auditions! I look forward to seeing her in the summer productions!

Lord, I pray that Your light will shine through this young girl, that she will grow in her faith and stand unashamed of the Lord Jesus Christ, our Savior and Friend. Help her words and actions to always reveal Your light that lives in her and draw others to You!  Give her the confidence and boldness to always take a stand for You in her life experiences. Guide her as she grows to be the young woman You want her to be!

“In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16).

 

 

 

 

A Walk along the Woods on a Winter Day

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Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

 

Peace

The dove — a symbol of peace — her first tree ornament in 2014. Because her Spanish name means “dove.” She is so loved, so peace-filled. A little child shall lead them …

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Loving Her Swing!

Oh, how I love to go up in the swing, up in the swing so high!

We had a beautiful Autumn day to capture some outdoor photos with this little P and her O’Pa. I love seeing her toothy smile and his big, caring hands in the photos. What fun it is to swing!
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A Walk in the Park

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Autumn … Ahh!

Leaf colors are beginning to change.

It couldn’t have been a more beautiful morning for this long walk in the park!

Big Girl High Chair

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How big are you?

Big enough now to sit in the old wooden high chair for a few minutes to capture this photo for posterity!

She’s 10 months already and loves the outdoors, but she must have wondered, “Why am I sitting outside without any lunch?”

It would be awesome to see a photo of her great-great-great grandfather sitting in his high chair as a baby–but as far as the family knows, those photos were never taken.  We can only imagine little Oliver!

She got kinda flirty and gave me some eyelash love. Butterfly kisses. Gotta love that and her always-wiggly little toes too!

Fresh Produce–Healthy Eating

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We’re thankful to be able to grow tomatoes, peppers, and other veggies and herbs on our deck where the deer and squirrels aren’t likely to share in the feast!

This summer we planted two variety of reds–Roma and Cherry Girl, and two of yellow pear tomatoes. They are all still producing, though ripening slowly now that Fall temperatures have arrived. 

Sometimes a tomato or two doesn’t even make it into the kitchen. 

Paloma at Seven Months

We made a wish, and you came true.
Muuwah!

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Once you’re parents, your marriage matters more, not less, because someone special is counting on you.

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“Babies are such a nice way to start people.”
― Don Herold

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I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day. When it’s cold outside, I’ve got the month of May. Well, I guess you’ll say what can make me feel this way? My girl!

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First we had each other. Then we had you. Now we have everything!

 

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Anticipating the Monarchs

When you plant milkweed and coneflowers, the monarchs WILL come!

If I were a butterfly or a bee, I’d like to live here.

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The Chicken Whisperer

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Chickens make wonderful pets.

Chickens help teach responsibility with daily feeding and watering chores.

Chickens provide bonus surprises — eggs! Healthy eating!

Here’s my favorite chicken whisperer with her sweet “Cocoa.” I wouldn’t be surprised if she doesn’t have doll clothes on Cocoa sometime soon. Maybe she’ll even push her in a doll stroller. Cocoa would love that!

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Happy Hostas

Rain has been abundant this spring and summer. The fauna and flora in our area are all very happy. The best watering comes from heavenly watering, a wise gardener once told me. Better than any spigot and garden hose.

Hosta blooms captured with my macro lens right after an early morning rain:

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Family of Three

 

 

 

 

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It was a great day at the park with this family of three, and the bonus was that the rain held off until we were done capturing many special moments.

Seven months old is a magical age! Baby P was fascinated with the ducks and people paddling on the pond. She challenged us to keep her on her special quilt made by her grandma. 

Love the love that was bubbling over during this session!

Rhododendron Beauty

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Fresh. Delicate. Ethereal.

This is just one of the hundreds of Spring blooms in our gardens.

I can’t get enough of this beauty. Simply awesome to see and inhale.

Pretty in Pink

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10 days fresh and new!

Waiting for Baby — Week 40

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A Favorite Place

2014 July Upper Penn 068The Thumbnail rock formation in Michigan’s Thumb area–Lake Huron–a great place to spend a day on the bike trail, picnicking and watching freighters go by!