29 November 2016
This splash was not supposed to turn out like this. I has in my mind that that I would actually write on their feet and at the last minute I thought editing the photo could look natural. What is natural is the spontaneity of these five people. As we were taking some shots cars are driving down our street (this is our front yard). The kids are quick to say, Momma, the neighbors are wondering what we are up to, again. Or, Yes, Mr. Car, we are sitting in our yard throwing leaves for the camera. We got this. They know we are going to pose for a picture. They know they are going to get to design and help. They know they are preserving their images and personalities for future generations. They know I expect them to participate and enjoy it. I hope they also know I love them. Happy Fall, Y'all.
28 November 2016
So Samantha walks in there, with me in tow for identification purposes, and the saleslady says, Hi, can I help you find something? Samantha just smiles and says, No ma'am. My name is Sam. The lady said, well then, you've come for your rose.
She presented Samantha with a pretty yellow rose and baby's breath. Very nice, Sam.
24 November 2016
Talk about laid back. Wow. Thanksgiving can't be any easier or casual than the BallTeam Thanksgiving, 2016. James' step mother, Jean, made Thanksgiving for us - all of it. Turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, stuffing and two pies. James went to see them on Wednesday, and brought it all home. On Thursday morning, I woke up, heated it all up in the oven and we all ate all day. It was amazing. We watched football and played board games and hung out. Then we ate some more. Rachel and Evan are not in this picture; they came over later and we had a chess tournament - which only got through the first two rounds before disintegrating into more football and food.
I am so thankful for these people. Each one teaches me something different. Each one is precious. I love them as a BallTeam and individually. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.
And, Rachel is thankful for sleep. (I'm so jealous.)
16 November 2016
There's a gravel stop on the side of the road, about twenty minutes north of our little rural Arkansas town that has a sheer cliff. I mean sheer. It drops off into nothing. The kind of cliff that makes every momma fiber of your being just cringe and gather your children back to the safety of the car.
But, no. Not this crowd. They had to go to the edge and take pictures.
You can see behind JMichael that the world just falls out into the abyss. Ok, abyss is a little dramatic. Acutally, it's about ten stories high. But it was chilly and windy and I just knew someone would get too close to the edge. No tragedy befell us this day, and it is a stunning view, but, too risky for my blood. A friend of ours who grew up here says that this is the cliff that people would take unwanted cars and just push them off. You can also see that other onlookers have visited this cliff with spraypaint in hand. In Romance, Arkansas.
12 November 2016
Father and son. JMichael had never slept in a tent and I wasn't' sure James would be able to, with his back problems. But you do the impossible for your kids, right?
JMichael had a blast - they played zombie tag in the dark with flashlights. They cooked scrambled eggs in bags. They built fires and learned about tracking animals. They shot rifles - and JMichael did really, really, well! Who knew?
He got to be a scout - out in nature with his friends (and all their dads). And a zombie.
James did not fare so well and was in bed the whole next day recovering from sleeping on an air mattress in the cold in a tent. But just ask him - you know he will do it again in a minute.
11 November 2016
Cabot High School has this display for Veteran's Day. Each flag has a picture and biography of a fallen soldier from Central Arkansas. So many are so young. They are from all the branches of the military. They total about fifty flags. It's very moving to walk among them and read about these brave and dedicated servicemen and women.
This is Bud Wassom. He is the son of a family in our ward and he was killed this past spring when a tornado ripped his home from its foundations. He was holding his daughter, who was found, only mildly hurt, about a block away. He died on the scene of his injuries. He is missed in our ward and his family.
07 November 2016
These are the proofs of the little ladies' school pictures this year (2016-2017). They are both great pictures of beautiful people. Just look at them - wearing the same shirt. Too funny. With four daughters, the rule is, if it fits you, you can wear it. None of that, hey, that's my shirt. Simply, if it fits you, you can wear it. Apparently, this shirt fits both Charlotte, eighth grade, and Josephine, sixth grade.
03 November 2016
This happened. This is an accurate representation of my every day life.
Every. Day. I do love these kids of ours.
By way of explanation, Charlotte kicked the soccer ball into the tree - see it up there? Josephine circled it for us. JMichael didn't climb the tree to get it down, he shook the branches. The Snapchat picture is curtesy of Josephine, as spectator and chronicler.