Monday, April 29, 2013

What We've Been Up To!

The fog of sleep deprivation is lifting as Brielle sleeps through the night now!  Woo hoo!  The outfit in the photo was given to us at the baby shower by a sweet sister in the Lord.  It says "I'm Kind of a BIG Deal . . .Just ask Mommy and Daddy!"  And yes, she IS a big deal around here.  We're all still thoroughly enjoying her adorableness!  (It is so hard for us not to be able to share her cuteness here!)  She is loved on by all. . . all day long!!! We continually praise the Lord for such an incredible blessing! 
Benjamin is still as cute and active as ever.  He is talking up a storm, and though we still can't understand a lot of what he says, it doesn't seem to slow him down.   : -)  
Joe is enjoying building things.  He even drew up a plan on paper recently for what he wanted to create!  : -)  He will probably be entering something into the Spring Youth Fair this week!  He is one happy little boy! 
Timmy has been so excited about his baseball season.  He has had practice just about every day for the last six weeks, rain or shine!  So as Kyle reported on his blog, Timmy thoroughly enjoyed his first game last week, which was a "make-up" game from one of the first two that were cancelled due to weather!  It is always fun watching his excitement! 
Valerie is super excited about having contacts for the first time ever!  Now, if only she could get her braces off!  :-)  She can't wait for that day!   She is continuing to keep very busy with her dog business.  With her last Australian Shepherd litter she learned soooo much  . . . about people. She had some very challenging situations, and we're so proud of her for how she has handled it all!   She is also quick to help with any babysitting needs!  :-)
Victoria is also getting contacts soon, so she is excited about that as well!  Her prescription is much more challenging to put into contact lenses, so hers will take a little longer to order.  She and Caroline enjoyed showing goats for some of the best boer goat breeders in the area last weekend.  They get paid $5.00 every time they step into the show ring, and with the quality of the goats they were showing, they did very well!  (And the breeders are very blessed to have their help!  The girls are highly sought after!)   Victoria and Caroline are in the process of selling their own goat kids, and so far, they have two going to Idaho and one going to Texas!  And for future kids, they have folks on their waiting list from Idaho, Kansas, Colorado and California!  They're looking forward to showing a couple of their own goats this weekend at the local Spring Youth Fair, and other's goats at a couple more big shows this summer.   The picture below is of Victoria with award winning "Paint Ball" who is being lovingly given to them by Leslie (owner standing next to her).

Caroline recently played her "Pirates of the Caribbean" song for a talent show in the nearby "big" city, and did very well!   She dressed up as a "pirate", even wearing an eye patch, and did a brief, funny little drama to begin the piece.  (Pictures coming soon!) It was very entertaining, and though it stretched her comfort zone, she did awesome!   She also did an amazing job with playing another song for a recent honors recital!  She says that performing is starting to get a lot easier, and even enjoyable!  We sure are blessed to hear her play every day! 
Kyle is keeping super busy these days with working everyday for some friends that manage a youth camp nearby.  He is enjoying the change of work, and feeling like he has a "real" job!  He is still trying to fit in his schoolwork, writing, odd jobs for others, and trap shooting when he can!  He is learning a lot about managing his time!  There have been times when we've teased about needing a clone or two to accompish all that he'd like to!  And with the challenges the quads are experiencing with juggling one car, he has mentioned the possibility of buying his first car! 
Lydia and Richie are just as delightful as ever. I am still so in awe of God's goodness in bringing them together. They are so perfect for each other!  I love watching how much they enjoy sharing the wonderful life God has given them . . .together.   And all the good things He is doing in and through them!  They give sooo much to JOY to us and to all who know them!
Today, Ted and I are in Seattle to give another set of fingerprints for our international adoption process. These are required by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service, thus the drive to Seattle to give them at their Homeland Security office here. Our adoption agency said that we could continue the process and be put on the wait list as soon as all the paperwork is in. Then, if our time comes up for a referral and we are still in the process of adopting Brielle, then we can be put on hold at the top of the list until we're ready. 
The homeschool convention was awesome, as always!!  We heard there were over 3,000 people in attendance!  Families come from Canada, Idaho, Montana, and Oregon.  We all enjoyed it very much, and were greatly encouraged.  It is so wonderful to all gather together, not only to learn and be refreshed concerning God's word and homeschooling, but to sing praises collectively to our Lord and Saviour is just so awesome!!!   We were glad to be able to try out our "rig" there for our upcoming 3 week trip.  Ted says it's about 45 feet long with the truck/camper pulling the borrowed trailer.  We'll be quite a sight! 
So now we switch gears as we all prepare for this once-in-a-lifetime trip!!  Stay tuned to see if we survive this "EPIC" (family joke) adventure!  : -) 
 "And whatever you do, whether in word or deed,
do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus,
giving thanks to God the Father through him."
Colossians 3:17

Friday, April 26, 2013

This New Season of Life

I sure am loving this abundant life God has given us!  It is such an interesting and full-of-life . . . life!  I am absolutely loving every part of being a help-meet to Ted; and mom to an infant, a 2 year-old, a 6 and 8 year-old, four 16 year-olds, and our married daughter and son-in-love.  :-)

I really can’t even describe the happiness I have knowing that each of these blessings are gifts from God.    And they are gifts that “keep on giving” so-to-speak!!  I love every stage from cuddling a newborn to the joy of watching Lydia thrive in her new life as a wife and being blessed with such an awesome new son! There is soooo much joy in every age and every stage!   

I also have great contentment in knowing that being a wife and mom is what God has called me to for this season of my life.  I pray each day as I strive to give my all to Him and to the souls He has entrusted to my care, that I will be faithful to walk in the good deeds that He has prepared beforehand for me. 

Every day is such an incredible whirlwind of activity with all of these beautiful stages of life all around me. You know the saying “God does not give us more than we can handle?”  Well, I believe that is really not a true statement.  :-)  I believe that God in His awesome goodness DOES give us more than we can handle, so that He has opportunity to lovingly show us His grace and power for our good and His glory.   His strength is made perfect in weakness.   I am so thankful for this, as in this new season of life, I feel stretched way beyond any natural God given abilities.  So I praise the Lord, for the Truth that “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,” as He faithfully accomplishes His work in and through each of us!
And oh how I am looking forward to this weekend at the Washington state homeschool convention!   It is such a refreshing and encouraging time to be with thousands of fellow homeschoolers and get recharged as God’s word is boldly proclaimed.  We always return home so inspired and emboldened to do "All for God's Glory!" 

Lord willing, more updates coming soon!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

We Have This Hope . . .

". . . we who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us
may be greatly encouraged.
We have this hope as an anchor for the soul,
firm and secure."
Hebrews 6:18b-19a 

"God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble."
Psalm 46:1

Praying with and for you all today,
as we see the heartache around us,
and as you walk through your own various trials. 


Sunday, April 7, 2013

Shower of Blessings

The baby shower for Lil Em was so beautiful!!! 
Pink, pink, pink . . . everywhere! 
We loved it!  
We are sooooo blessed to have such wonderful sisters in the Lord,
who came out to share
this special occasion with us. 
They blessed us beyond measure!!! 
My heart is overflowing with thanksgiving
for such amazing love and support 
showered upon us.  
We are so thankful for these two lovely ladies :-)
taking pictures of the shower.
 So I'll have more pictures to share soon!
(Or maybe some will pop up on Lydia's blog ;-)
 Can't wait to see all these
adorable clothes on Lil Em!
We received sooooo many wonderful,
useful and special gifts.
Thank you so much to each and every one of you!!
May the Lord bless you for being such a blessing! 

Saturday, April 6, 2013

My Four Sons

"Sons are a heritage from the Lord . . ."  Psalm 127:3
Just thought I'd share a little snippet of what the Bowes boys are up to on any given day.   I love, love, love my boys!!!
Benjamin is following after his big brothers' footsteps with loving baseball.  He recently acquired his own little baseball mitt and he is always found wearing cleats that are several sizes too big for him.  He can slip them on easily, and as Lydia mentioned on her Easter post, he loves them so much, he even slips into the van undetected to go somewhere with them on.  

 I think he is really loving his new role as big brother!  He really adores his baby sister and is constantly asking to hold her, or make her happy in some way.  As I was dressing her today, he was calling her "adorable" and "cutie pie."  : -)

 He is finally able to enjoy the tree swing that has been a favorite of each of the kids since moving into our house here.
This tractor has been seen in many pictures throughout the years. 
It was given to Kyle by Meemom and PapaBob back in Flagstaff.
It made the trip here, and has been loved by all the boys.
The new Joe! 
Just lost his first tooth!

Back to that wonderful tree swing! 

 Joe is a lot like his Mama was as a kid. 
Play hard . . .crash hard . . . and anywhere, anytime.
Timmy is still loving the swing too! 
And is also thoroughly enjoying the start of baseball season.
 This week during the school's spring break,
he went to a baseball camp for three days. 
He learned and practiced many baseball skills.
Then, there's the Strong Man Bowes,
finishing up his rock work at Meemom and PapaBob's house,
 in between his school work,
writing, and other odd jobs around here and for hire.

 I think the pictures really don't do these amazing rock walls justice.  They are truly very awesome!!

Well, better run along to get ready to join all of the Bowes girls for Lil Em's baby shower.  The very sweet ladies at church are hosting it, and we are sooooo excited about it!!  It is soooo very special for us as we haven't had a girl to spoil love in 16 years!!!    We are soooo very grateful for all their support!!
I love, love, love my girls!!!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Such a Blessed Day!

We had such a beautiful Resurrection Day
celebrating all that Jesus Christ, 
our Lord and Saviour,
has done for us!! 
We hope each one of you did as well! 
We started the morning with a wonderful breakfast
and fellowship with our
brothers and sisters in Christ
at our church.
Then, we enjoyed our awesome worship service!

 After church, we made a quick stop at DeGoede's for an Easter photo shoot!
 After a little rest, we headed over to the Tevis'
for a super, duper fun afternoon and evening!
Richie was so awesome to move his tractors out to help create some very  special memories
on the farm for the kids.
I just love this new son of ours sooo much!  

 As soon as the eggs were hidden, the three little ones enjoyed finding them . . .

 and of course, this wee one,
couldn't resist stopping often to enjoy the treats inside!
Some of the beauty found around the farm that day!  : -)
 The big ones enjoying some fun with playing horseshoes!
Thank you Richie, Lydia, Janet and Rich
for such a super special and fun time!
 (I especially love this last picture!!  : -) 

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