Friday, April 1, 2016

Quotes Archive 2016

Though You slay me, yet I will praise You. Though You take from me, I will bless Your name. Though you ruin me, still I will worship. Sing a song to the One who's all I need. Though You Slay Me (Shane & Shane)

The longer I live the more beautiful life becomes. If you foolishly ignore beauty, you will soon find yourself without it. Your life will be impoverished. But if you invest in beauty, it will remain with you all the days of your life. Frank Lloyd Wright

So maybe having a big family is the way to go, because you get at least a taste of all the other lives you'd like to live. Dorcas Smucker

Surely what a man does when he is taken off his guard is the best evidence for what sort of man he is. CS Lewis

Monday, March 21, 2016

Grey Turns Six!

Our baby boy is all grown up now! It's amazing to think of just how quickly the time has passed. We are so proud of our boy, and so grateful he's ours! Here's his big #6 birthday video!
 

Brooks' six year old video is here, and Kenna's is here:-)

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Baseball Baby Shower

Baby Knox was not quite here yet, and we decided to throw a surprise shower for his Mommy in early January. The pulling off of the surprise itself was actually really complicated, involving bringing people in from out of town, and "casually" hijacking facebook conversations...and it worked. There were so many moving, it was scary. But we pulled it off! So rare. So wonderful. She was completely surprised!

The planning team (a few friends) decided on a baseball theme (because Daddy was a college baseball player), and they love the Red Sox, and have a dog named Fenway, so it all seemed to fit. Instantly, the ideas started flowing. It was perfect!

We decided to have all "ball game foods" served, and that was really fun...and our menu kept growing and growing!
We got those little hard plastic baseball hats on amazon, and used them as bowls for ice cream sundaes. We also had black forest trifles (in a cup)

Drinking Root Beer, Coke, and cold coffee from glass bottles...and plenty of peanuts in the shell for the taking too! Amy's 11 year old daughter (house host) made that chalkboard sign for us! So perfect!


A diaper cake!

The "Concessions" table - see the banner?
We had: Red licorice, and Baby Ruth (fun size)
warm, soft pretzels and mustard
popcorn & flavour toppings for it
nacho cheese dip and chips
Oreo cookie pops (made into baseballs)
Mini hot dogs wrapped in a crescent roll
Cracker Jacks
Cheese ball and crackers
Veggies and dip in cups

A mini oreo dipped in white chocolate, a topper for the trifles, and I made big ones too from normal oreos and put them on a stick for a "cake pop". YUM.
We had a baseball for all the guests to sign, and I gave her a wooden baseball bat with "Knox" inscribed on it for a shower gift.

It was way cuter than what is portrayed in my lame phone pics. It was truly off the charts adorable, and super duper fun to put together.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Bible Quiz and Winter Retreat 2016


Presenting two members of the winning teams from Colonial Baptist Church, for the Awana Bible Quiz 2016!

Our church participates in the Awana Bible Quiz each year, and Kenna and Brooks were both selected, and were members of a three person team. You compete as a team, and do a written test, multiple choice "paddles" questions, and then the "buzzer" portion where it's every man for himself (you have to buzz in first, and then correctly quote the verse/answer with no mistakes). Brooks was on a team (there were many teams, from our church and other local churches) for the "First Book" and Kenna was on a team for the "Second Book". 

They both won (along with teammates) in their age categories!! (Last year, Kenna and her 2 teammates got 4th place). They were pretty pumped - awesome for one of them to get first place, but for both of them too was really really great!!

During the "buzzer" portion - There were 2 members of each team participating (in each age group, so there were "4 sets" of everything), and then the 3rd team member would sub in/out as needed (if you buzz out in a good way, getting 3 questions right, or in a bad way, getting 3 wrong, or your coach can sub you out for any reason) - This was the "First Book" only up on stage. There were about 16 kids in each of the 4 age/book groups, and so it's hard to buzz in first!

It was a LONG day...from our 7:45 arrival, until it's end at 1pm. Grey and I took a couple breaks - and we had a starbucks together. It was the first time I've ever bought any of my kids a drink from there, and he loved it. Later in the day "Thanks for that hot chocolate, Mom. It was actually one of the best I've ever had". The moment called for a selfie using the photo props at the Starbucks:-)

First through Fourth place winning teams for Book One - Brooks' first place team on the first row

First through Fourth place winning teams for Book Two - Kenna's first place team on the first row. Her teammate (boy beside her) won an individual award for the highest scoring single person in the entire event with an absolutely PERFECT score (so very rare!!)
Brian missed watching it with us, and he was bummed about that - but scheduling conflicts!! We are involved in Youth Group at church, and Brian teaches on Wednesday nights. That weekend was the Winter Retreat, and Brian was teaching a few sessions there...
One of his sessions

Youth Pastor's baby, Zeke.
They were away Friday evening and came home Sunday evening, late. Brian said it was a super great time - he loved it! I hope that next year there is no conflict on the dates, and then I can go to the retreat too!

Dishwasher Detergent - DIY

I started making my own dishwasher detergent - and it works so well! It's a powder, and there are other recipes to be found online, and since each dishwasher washes in its own unique way, make a small batch of your recipe to test it on your machine and make sure it's doing a good job.

I've been using vinegar as my "jet dry" rinse agent for years, and I'm glad I now have an economical, and toxin free way of cleaning the dishes also:-) Essential oil drops can be added to the powder for scent, if desired

2 parts borax
2 parts washing soda
1 part salt
1 part citric acid

Use 2 T for each load.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

The Little Things

Last night at dinner, while helping himself to some butter, Brian said,

"I like this butter dish. It reminds me of you"

I just started laughing...

"That's so funny, because it reminds me of you!"
We needed a new butter dish this fall - not urgently (hey. small plates work fine), but we were definitely in need of one, since ours got a big crack in it during the renovations/packup/unpack this summer. While browsing Pier 1 for fun, I stumbled across this lil beauty, on clearance. There are few things that catch my eye more than "fun" and "pretty" and "on sale". While not a drastic reduction in price ($9.99 from $12.99), I still just felt like it was calling my name, so I bought it.

I brought it home and, my natural exuberance over the adorable butter dish could not be contained.

"I have to show you what I bought!! It's the best ever!!! Hang on..."

By the levels of excitement, he is led to assume I've purchased a new tv, or car, or pony for the kids. But he should know better by now.

"Look! Isn't it adorable!, and it was even on sale!!!"

He gives it a half heartedly delighted look and says "That won't fit butter"

Whhhhaaattt?

Yes it will! It's a butter dish, it's made for butter.

Sure enough, he's right. It doesn't fit butter. Butter here comes in half cup "sticks" and this dish lid is drastically too slanted to fit a butter stick. Golly! Who sells butter dishes that don't hold butter?! Now I'm feeling ripped off. Cheated even. $9.99 for a dish that won't hold butter! But it's so pretty and eclectic and goes so perfectly on my table...

I'm currently on the lookout for *the perfect* napkin holder. It's been a long, weary hunt. And given my spacial orientation deficiencies, here's hoping when I do find one, it actually holds napkins without having to origami them into half their size.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

In Other Words 2015


This year our quotable crew did not disappoint! To quote the most popular and overused phrase in all Brooks' recent prayers “lets hope” this puts a smile on your face today!

The Past:
Kenna: Oh wow Mom, you were so tall and skinny!
Mom: That's Jared {Darla's brother}

Kennedy kids shoveling the driveway in the middle of a huge snow stormBrooks: Wow. You guys have had tragic lives

Gender Roles in 2015
playing with 8 week old kittens
Brooks: Shadow and Marble look like boys to me
Kenna: Brooks! Why would you say that?
Brooks: I don't know, they just look like boys
Kenna: Well I just don't know why you would say such a thing! They are just little kittens! {compassionately} And calling things boys when they are girls is actually very mean and hurtful
word is still out on how offended the kittens were :-)

Grey had come down from bed the previous night with a tummyache
Mom: How's your tummy feel today? Did the DiGize work? (an essential oil)
Grey: Yah. I mean, my tummy doesn't really hurt anymore, except if someone punches me in the stomach, or kicks me, then it still hurts
Mom: Ok, well, that's totally normal. My tummy would hurt too if someone punched me
Grey, in a "duh/captain obvious" tone: uh, yah, but that's cause you're a woman

Guessing at a friends baby gender, all three kids decided on Boy
Mom: I don't know, I'll say girl I guess
Kenna: Why?
Mom: Well, because I was born first, and I had a girl first, so I just think it's sweet to have a girl first I guess. I'm actually surprised you didn't say girl!
Kenna: Yah, well, for their sake, I do hope it is a girl. Like, otherwise people never have any more kids
Mom, raised eyebrows
Kenna: You know, like if you have a boy first it's like "Whooooooo, I'm not having any more kids", but if you have a girl first you're like "oooooook, now we can have more kids" because when you have a boy first you're so busy chasing them around, you just can't ever think about more kids

Mom wearing camo capri's...
Grey: Oh, those are cool pants, Mom. You know, womens can go to war. I mean, not you, 'cause you're too old, and fat. But skinny womens can go to war, if they want


Grey tries on his Antman costume
Brooks: Wow. Grey has 8 abs, and boobs!
Thankfully he said it in a really impressed tone, and Grey was all too pleased with his insta-body-sculpting

On Multitasking:
Telling me all the particulars of yet another lego creation
Mom: Ok, that's great, but can you show me later because I'm trying to watch this
Grey: Yah, but you can watch that, and listen to me, that's called doing two separates

On Food:
Reading over my shopping list
Brooks: ...cooking wine. Wine? WINE?!
Mom: Yes, I use it in recipes, like Chicken Marsala
Brooks: Kenna! Kenna!! Mom is trying to drunk us!!

having a 'who can eat fastest' competition
Grey: No Brooks! NO! That's cheating! You're cheating! You can't just swallow you hafta chew! MOM! Brooks is cheating!
Brooks: It's not called cheating, it's called technique

buying a bag of "regular" carrots for cooking...
Brooks: Woah! Kenna! Look at these way overgrown carrots!!
so maybe we buy baby carrots a little too often...

Grey: I am really sens-titive about hotness, Sonny, so don't even talk to me about hotness, or I might be burned, I am really that sens-titive

May, not wanting to eat a "cookie" I made - no sugar, no flour, and whole food "diet" approved
Kenna, offers encouragement: Just eat it May, it's just a cookie. Well, I mean, it is a healthy cookie, so it's really not that good, but just eat it

I accidentally dropped some butter from my knife...
Kenna, reporting to Dad: ...and then Mom just threw butter across the room, scooped it up off the floor, put it on her bread and ate it!! Canadians sure do weird things!

On Delegation:
Sent to clean her room...
Mom: What are you doing out here?
Kenna: Oh, just waiting. The kids actually like crawling under my bed, so they're getting everything out for me, even the crumbs. It's really a win-win for me

On Kindness:
some type of ruckus results in Grey's crying...
Brooks: Kenna! Dad says comfort people when you do damage to them!

On Prayer:
Grey, at dinner: I wanna pray! K, Jesus, please make sure the world doesn't turn into, umm, {long pause}, wait, nevermind, I need to start over. Dear Jesus, thank you for making humans, and tools. Amen

Getting ice cream...
Brooks, reading the signage: awwww, yogurt?
Kenna: No Brooks really, I've had it before. It tastes just like ice cream, only it's super healthy for you
Brooks, looking shocked/lightbulb moment: My prayers have been answered!!!
So apparently we need to have a discussion on what constitutes a worthy prayer request...aaaaaaannnnd what we'd consider to be the definition of "super healthy”

On Aging:
heading to a friends birthday party...
Kenna (age 9): Is Abram turning 6?
Brooks (age 8): No, he's already 6! He's turning 7
Kenna: Wow, 7? That just blows my mind
Brooks, with a sigh: I know, they just grow up so fast

Brooks: Did you know that Eli's Great Great Great Great Great Grandma is 99 years old?
Mom: hmm, wow, that's very old
Kenna: Uh, no! That is too many Greats. That would be like his ancestors in Egypt or whatever

overhearing a conversation...
Kenna: ...no no, Mom is middle age
Brooks: No, middle age is 20, so Mom's already in old age
Kenna: No, old age is 40, so she's still technically in middle age, but sort of in old age

Getting out the Christmas decor
Kenna: See this book is torn, and you have to be careful with it because it's very old
Brooks: How old?
Mom: I don't know exactly, it was mine when I was little
Brooks: oh ok, so it is really old then
and a day just wouldn't be complete with my old age somehow factoring in:-)

Brooks: Mom, I only counted four burgers!
Mom: Yes, one for you and Grey, and Kenna said she wanted two. The adults are eating steak
Brooks: There are adults coming?!
Mom: Your father and I are adults
Brooks: Oh, right

On Creativity:
Heading to church for a meeting
Mom: Did you guys grab the bag with toys and stuff to play with?
Kenna: Oh, no, we forgot it. But that's ok. We can just play rock paper scissors or another made up game. We're very creative like that

driving in the city...
Kenna: Oh look, a horse!
Mom: Huh?
Kenna: The clouds. They look like shapes! (condescendingly) You can only see them if you have imagination. Oh, see! A snake
Mom: Riiiight. Real creative. A snake.

Mom, about to to start an activity with the kids: Alrighty boys, lets make some magic!
Kenna: Uuuhh, no. Magic has totally already been invented

On Nationality:
Brooks: We are really lucky that Dad married a Canadian
yes, I like to think of it that way too:-)

Kids getting riled up and crazy before bed. Brian blames all negative behaviours on their Canadian roots...
Brian: I can't believe I'm surrounded by so many Canadians
Darla: Uh, no! They are just as much American. And anyway, how do you think I feel moving here and being surrounded by so many Americans!
Brian: Blessed?

On Talent:
Kenna: Brooks is really good at copying voices
Brooks: It's called vocal manipulation

after her piano recital
Mom: Were you nervous?
Kenna: Nope! ...But I was really, like, hot

putting on his roller blades
Brooks: Hey, what is the speed limit around here?
Oh the confidence. No worries son, I assure you, you need not be concerned

On Modern Convenience:
Grey: Can you lower down the stand you use to scan the clothes, so I can play on it?
Mom: That is called ironing. It's an ironing board

On Being Brian...
While preparing desserts for a wedding
Pastor Dan (I can't recall his exact words, but jist was): Your Dad is lucky, he gets to be the taste tester
Kenna: Yah, he gets to be the one who says 'meh, that's kinda okay'
If you know Brian, you know that this is actually akin to a rave review. LOL!!

Convo while out to dinner with friends...
Friend: If you could write a book on any topic, what would it be about?
*everyone pauses to think a moment*
Brian: Comedic timing
Bahahaha! Literally there is no one else who can make me die laughing while rolling my eyes. Heart him. And his "comedic timing"

Starting to drive out of our parking spot before the kids were seated/buckled. Another car started to pull out, so I applied the brakes...
Brooks: Whoa!!
Mom: Sorry. We were going to hit someone
Grey: Uh, no. We weren't going to hit anyone, you were. You are driving, notus
This is so annoyingly Brian's child, I don't even know what to say sometimes;-)

How the World Works:
Mom: Wow guys, they're tracking a 12 ft female tiger shark named Chessie off our beach
Kenna: What?! What are we going to do?!
Mom: Nothing. They'll let us know if it's going to be a problem
Kenna: The world is just sooooo deathly! I mean, it's like with every step you take, you have a fifty-percent chance of dying!!

Kenna: If you've touched fog, you've touched a dying cloud

Grey: I climbed all the way to the top! My heart was going like boom boom boom! It was like my heart was trying to escape from my lungs!!

On Money:
Grey swallowed a coin, and we had to "go fishing" for it
Brooks: Can I buy this sour candy?
Mom: How much money do you have?
Grey: I wish I had any money. Can I have money?
Brooks: No! You don't get any. Mom's afraid you're going to nibble on it

Grey: Sonny we are not poor! My mom has two hundred and eighty three dollars!

On Intelligence:
Mom, staring blankly across the table at no one in particular, but in Grey's general direction
Grey: What? Don't look at me, I'm not the dummo in this family!
Mom: Huh? What's a dummo
Grey, in a "duh" sarcastic tone: A dumb person
I'm afraid to ask who he thinks *is* the "dummo" :-)

Brooks: Where are we?
Mom: You don't recognize it the street?
Kenna: I do, I just forget what it's called
Mom: I'll give you a hint...there are 4 universal navigational directions - this is one of them
Kenna: Um, oh! Left, right...up...and down?
Mom: No! North...
Kenna: RIGHT! East Beach!

Asking me a question about her school work...
Kenna: This just says "My Shadow", if I put quotes around it, what is it? A story, or a song?
Mom: Hmmm, I don't know. It could be the title of a poem, or it could be a story...
Grey: Or it could be a legend!

getting down to the end of the toothpaste
Brooks: Uggghh! We're almost outagain! I don't get it, it says it's supposed to last two plus years!
Mom: No, that is how old you have to be to use the toothpaste!
The tube clearly states 2+, so I guess that's a logical conclusion:-)

On Behaviour:
We have a few small gifts/rewards the kids can earn with our blessing/if-then charts...
Brooks, telling Daddy: ...and now there's a competition for the comic book, because Kenna says she might be interested in it, so it's like, who's going to have the most points, because Kenna is able to be good consistently, and me and Grey, not so much

Words To Live By:
Grey, holding scissors "incorrectly"
Kenna: Hey, a tip for you. Always hold scissors facing down, otherwise you'll fall and they'll stab you in the gullet
Brooks, randomly waving around a walmart bag like a rhythmic dancer: And here's another tip for you. Never put a bag over your head
Kenna: Yes, or you could die
Grey, without skipping a beat, but with the obvious tone of "stop running my life", decides to offer up a tip of his own: Oh yah? Well, here's a tip, don't eat yellow snow!

PREVIOUS EDITIONS:
In Other Words 2014
In Other Words 2013
In Other Words 2012