Sunday, October 15, 2017

Pre-teen Parenting....anyone??

For a number of years, as I was manning the home-front with my three energetically handsome littles underfoot, everybody always told me to "enjoy these preschool years because they grow up sooo fast" but nobody really warned me that it was indeed THAT FAST!!! So let me say it loud and clear, possibly with a voice teetering on shouting, to you moms of preschoolers (& toddlers & babies...)....enJOY these nonstop crying/toddling/tantrum-throwing-in-the-middle-of-Target years because it truly does go by THAT FAST! I'm serious on this one. THAT FAST! Not only will you be school shopping for that adorable chubby cheeky lil' toddler soon-to-be-kindergartner of yours all too soon enough, but those looming-locker-combination years of 7 different classes in a school day are chasing your child down the fast track just as quick. And it's all too surreal.

First day of school 2017!! We love Legacy!!!
How on earth did we get here?! And so quickly? 7th grade?!?!
And how on earth do you parent a 7th grader?!
7th Grade!!!
I could easily give the classically rehearsed Sunday School answer when questioned what to do when you don't know what to do---just pray. Pray to Jesus. Daily. And definitely do that!! And believe me when I say we have been doing that. Daily. But I need some hearty meat on that honest-truth, bare-bones answer. Like the daily solving of those unsolvable teenage issues. Those crazy hormones. The at-ti-tude. Oh the bossy-ness! And tears have already been shed. On his part. (not just mine)



And I have a BOY....I thought girls were the only hormonal tearful ones?!? Please tell me, other sweet moms-of-boys out there, that you too are seeing your once level-headed, straight-laced, even-keel son shed a tear or two...for some uncandid reason or another??! Even if it was due impart to homework? And oh those lovely little whiteheads that are now popping up (pun intended) as we make sure to keep that extra bar of Irish Spring soap on hand morning and night.  I'm not sure what it is about 7th grade that puts a knot in my stomach like I've been kicked by a horse's hind leg. Add to the fact that not only do we now have a junior high boy, but also a handsome middle school one right alongside his brother. 5th grade is a whole new world. And thrown in the kiddie mix would be the entering-halfway-through-the-elementary-years of the youngest brother. Ugh. The umpteen grey hairs that are forming simply as I type away....

Carson's a 5th grader
Mason's a 2nd grader

Ready for school pics!
So glad Grandma could be a part of it all!

Side-by-side with my fav...so blessed to be a part of the Legacy family!
We had to buy Austin a laptop for school this year. (insert HUUUUUGE gulp...) Forget dealing with hormones and attitude. Now we have to figure out how to parent those said hormones and attitude alongside dealing with technological temptations galore. That scares me/us much worse. (Technology, not the attitude)
Sometimes I look at my parents and think, man they had it easy. It was pretty 'cut and dry'. They could either say 'yes' or 'no'. There was no real worry about what was 'read between the lines' on a text because you had to actually 'read between the lines' on that friend's facial expression. Because it was face to face.  And you just knew. You were good at reading. The teenage pressures were and still are the same but they have intensified to the 'enth degree.
Tubin' with friends!
One thing I've come to be extra grateful for is the fact that it's not just Andy and I pouring into the lives of our children. And by that I mean others who are loving them while speaking Truth into their lives. Loving them genuinely as Christ does, speaking Truth in an honest manner, all the while giving room for growth to happen. Intentional discipleship is happening and we couldn't be more grateful as we prayerfully tred these parenting waters along so many who are in the same boat.

One final time on the lake before the fall chill sets in!

And in FFof5 fashion, here's your updated "photo scroll" of the latest Anderson happenings....

First Day of School FUN!
August 21, 2017


Buds--Drew and Carson!

 Family time!
Andy and Austin ready to "float the Rum River"

Andy & Carson's turn to kayak on the Rum River!
Sibling love! Never a dull moment.... ;)
Morris Carlson family....party of 8 :)

Love my sister time!!
So much fun having Kari & Jay stay with us

MN State Fair craziness!
state fair bound!!

Its the Minnesota great get-together :)
Cheese curds!! (a must at the fair)
drink break ;)

Malts from the dairy building of course!

 Legacy Mane Event 2017!!

7th graders with Mr. Nydam....let's do this! ;)

Mason's in the mud pit!!
Carson and Kyle...nice and muddy :)
Austin with his buddy Carson...the aftermath ;)
Mason racing with the juniors and seniors! (he thot he was hot stuff...haha!)
Austin and Brandon!

Wooohoooo Carson!
Mason attempting the wall ;)
Women's Retreat!!
Canoeing with my beautiful friend Melita! ;)

Love these amazing ladies!!! LCA moms :)

Backyard fun!
Hunting squirrels...in our backyard ;)

Love fall in MN!!!!
These boys are HIS boys. I'll fail as their mom. They'll fail us as our children. But whether it's parenting a 7th grader, a 5th grader, or a 2nd grader (or whatever the age!), I'm continually discovering that it all boils down to loving your child as Jesus does, unabiasedly and wholeheartedly, with Biblical Truth woven into daily living, disciplining with the 'rod' and also with extended grace. And it also takes a whole lotta laughter and purposeful, intentional time together. I love being a mom of boys!!!!
Family photo op...ready to cheer on those Vikes! ;)

Friday, August 11, 2017

One Year Later

Can it be that it's already been a year? One. Whole. Year?!? Yes in fact, it has. Just over 365 days since we set foot on Minnesota soil. As residents. 372 days ago we barely slept a wink as we stretched out on the mattresses that lined the bedroom floors for the first time inside our new home.

Home!! Aug 4 2016 :)
I'm sure I've said it a hundred times but I'll say it again. 

Still a little bit surreal at times. 

All of it. The move. The current circumstances. The weightiness of the past year. As we lived through these beginning days of August, we couldn't help but remember where we came from and what was happening that exact day. Oh the chaos. Praise God for His unwavering faithfulness to us through it all. It does a heart some good to look back once in a while. ;) Perspective.
One year ago.....
As our MN summer progressed on with continual baseball games, fun family visits, and everything in-between, we geared up for the main trip we were used to taking each and every summer. And in all honesty, I wasn't sure how or what I would feel as we "locked and loaded" the van for our annual Anderson FFof5 trip to visit our extended family and friends. Because it was 'backward' (??) than what our family summer vacation's have looked like for the past 11 years.

Never a dull moment :) We love traveling!!!
As we kicked back and enjoyed the 2-day cross-country drive (and honestly, it really was enjoyable! Both ways! For the most part....at times....except for the endless rain in Nebraska & Iowa....and boy squabbles...and random outbursts of opera-like singing thanks in part to Beauty and The Beast....and unstoppable arm farts...and real ones to boot....)....where was I!?! Oh yes. The drive. Actually, during a stretch of long open highway when there is seemingly nothing to look at out the window (ex: if you've seen one windmill, whether it be in the farm fields of Iowa or the wide-open countryside of windy Wyoming, you've seen them all) and that book on tape is sorely losing interest of it's listeners, the hubs and I did a little calculation alongside some road-trip reminiscing. We've made this same drive 14 times (meaning roundtrip) so we kinda know the ins and outs, the where's and where-not's to stop along I-80. We've got 'em pegged. However, we never fail to stumble upon some new ones which only adds to the unpredictable dynamics of the Drive!

One of our favorite stops--Echo Canyon!
God's painting of the NV sunset skies--pictures never do justice.... miss that view!
I think they missed each other!
Jace & Carson--such buds!

Picnic after some pool time with cousins Jovi and Aven!
Luau party time with the whole Anderson fam!!!
Such buddies, these 3!
More cousin lovin'!
so fun playing yard games!!
Mason & Aven--these 2 didn't miss a beat! Buddies for sure :)
Always havin' fun alongside my man
#forevermyguy  --- Luau fun with my hottie!!
One thing I faced on both ends of this particular summer vacation spectrum, a similar series of questions relating to "so...how was it? Was it hard coming/going back? Did you go by your old house?" A simple answer for those still wanting to ask those very same questions is yes. Yes it was hard! Yes it was weird! But it was also so very good. :) Yes, it was hard to drive by those 4-walls on Mica Court that once housed this family of five for 11 years but it was also so good. I could have easily been swept up in the teary barrage of memories threatening to thrust themselves forward as I gazed at the front green lawn "with that one crunchy brown spot" that once played part in my boys' lifting-one-leg as a toddler as they sat so as to get used to the so-called prickly grass. Or that instantaneous picture in my mind of my fatherly husband running alongside each of his young boys down the driveway as the bike riding lessons began. Or remembering the endless times our 3 young gents squealed in delight as daddy rounded the corner into our driveway after a long day at school. Nothing but perfect, timeless memories for our family's continuing story. 

A little time at the ball field with the Hinton's!
Daniel and Carson--cousins and buds!! :)
More cousin time!!!
Now that's more like it ;)
Many fun meals together with Nanny and Pappy!
But I didn't cry driving away. None of us did. We could only thank God for providing that perfect home at the perfect time for our growing family. As the sage green house disappeared in the rear-view mirror, I had to add a simple prayer in my mind that the couple behind that ivory front door was making the most out of living each and every day in that quiet cul-du-sac as they raised their 2 young children, praying the memories they made would be as sweet and dear to their hearts as ours have become.

A drive up into the mountains for the day--
One of our favorite places! Hinkey Summit--on the way to Lye Creek campground
Picnic lunch time of course!
Nevada beauty

Even in our 'early dating years' this became a special place--funny how you come to see things differently.
My mountain man :)
Daddy & Carson
mr. Mason!

Nanny & grandsons!
Love these Handsome Gents!!!

Austin--my handsome (gulp) 7th grader ;)
I don't know how many of you have ever moved. If it was a move down the street, across the state, over state lines, or one that required a visa and a passport. But I think each move has something in common. You hold a lot of memories near and dear to your heart and yet, you also move on to where your feet are currently planted!! A graduate moving into his/her college dorm room or apartment, newlyweds moving from renting their apartment to owning their first home, a family downsizing (or upsizing) to the next home that God has led them to, the scenarios are simply endless! But regardless of the situation, moving brings with it a great anticipation of new beginnings, of what's to come, both known and unknown.

movie time with cousins--seeing Cars 3 of course!
love my Nat!
...and this gal too ;)
Best of friends--love ya Mike and Elisha!! :)

Mason HAD to see Mrs. Rinas!! ;)
Date night in the desert with my favorite! :) #forevermyguy

A fun stop on our way home!
They always look for their names--first time the 3 of them all found them at the same time!!
Bass Pro Shop shooting fun
Naturally you make forts in the van after 20+ hours of driving.... ;)
Summer is already nearing it's end as we forge on ahead into our second year at Legacy. I admit that leading into it my heart and mind have started to become a little anxious. But making it a point to know that being 100% present in my various roles as a wife/mom/teacher/friend/daughter/sister/etc. 100% of the time can not be, nor should it be, a reality. Keeping it ever-presently noted that I need to pipe down on those expectations of myself, thanks in part to some sweet friends who speak truth to my heart, my anxiousness has been able settle down a little bit. :)  It has instead turned more toward an excitement of what awaits us this year! All five of us. Faith-building to the Core is likely, faith-stretching is more than probable, and current friendships deepening, with more being established, has already taken place.

Minnesota summer nights!! Love it!!

We finished off our summer (prior to school starting, because there's still some MN 'summer' left to live and do around here even after school starts!) with quality family time around the fire a time or two, baseball (finally!) coming to a close for Carson and his team at the state tournament, impromptu get-togethers with friends, going in and out of those school doors as we prep our classrooms, more family and friend time for birthday parties and coffee dates, basking in the sunny days and soaking up the rainy days.

The play's at first! Carson throws to Drew...runner's out! :)

One of my favorite pics of the season :)

On deck...
A triple to tie the game!!!

What a fun (extended) season with this team--way to go Andover Gold!!

Ready or not, here go! Jumping in with both feet as we start off year #2 at Legacy Christian Academy!! We do so prayerfully. Carefully. Eagerly. And above all else,  faithfully as we seek His face to shine upon us daily, carrying out His plan that's before us.

A picture worth a thousand words....

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6