First Day of School Photos

Fall is here, hear the yell, back to school, ring the bell,
Brand new shoes, walking blues, climb the fence,
Books & pens…I can tell that we are gonna be friends.

  Love that song!  I will tell you more later, about WHY it is stuck in my head at the moment.  Pretty exciting stuff!

  So, school is back in full swing at our house.  For the first time in 6 years, our family is attending somewhere other than Central Christian.  Our family goes back 30 plus years at that school, but the Lord called us to a different school this year.  I will share more about that tomorrow, but for now, here are our first day of school photos!

Destiny first dayTylan first dayAvery first daypaxton first day

I can’t believe summer is over!!!!




  I was gone all weekend to Women’s Encounter, where I got to share the good news of a Father who is still in the Marriage Restoration Business.  I was sooo excited but tired when I got home, that I didn’t check my blog posts scheduled, and apparently this one got posted yesterday. Oops! Now you get to read it all over again. Sorry about that! 🙂

  Real quick before we get to the Circus, I want to share that 12 women got Baptized at Encounter. Woot woot!  God moved in mighty mighty ways, the Holy Spirit so powerful, you could feel the reverberations through the room.
If you ever get a chance to go, do. Just do.  Don’t over think it, just go and be changed. Satan will do what he can to keep you from attending, but just know, if he is that threatened by Encounter, it’s bound to be life changing!

  Every year, the First Graders at Central Christian School put on a Circus.  It’s a ton of work for the teacher, but everyone loves it, and talks about it with great anticipation their entire 1st grade year. 

  This is the 20th Annual 1st Grade Circus!!! Let the show begin!

Here they come:

circus 1

This Circus had the most amazing trapeze artists,circus 2

Acrobatic Jugglerscircus 3

An amazingly strong Strong Man, circus 4

A daring tight rope walker and some funny clowns!circus 6circus 5

  Ty likes to play clown so much at home, I was sure that is who he would choose to be.


  But, he informed me he was the Monkey!  They drew names and that is what he selected, he was such a great sport and the cutest little chimp you ever did see!circus 7  The fearless Lion and Tiger and Cougar Tamer, put on a great show!  Then the clowns came back out to make more mischief before the show was over.  circus 8

  Since it was the 20th Annual Circus, Mrs. Penner invited all the former Circus performers to come out onto the gym floor, and stand next to the character they were many years ago.  It was so cool!
Destiny was the tight rope walker 5 years ago now, WOW.  You can see her in the bottom right photo below, in the black leotard, front and center.   
MY BABY! Waaaah!circus 9

That’s the Show Folks, thanks for coming!

~Tylan for Central Christian’s First Grade Class


Back To School 2013

  Yesterday was our first day of school!  Waaah! How is summer OVER already!?!?!

  I missed the Bigs terribly, but the Littles and I did enjoy our one on one time together!!!!

  Avery is a new 5, so her teachers felt it was important for her to wait one more year.  They also explained the benefits of siblings not following each other back to back in school.   Made sense!

  So, rather than do preschool another year, I am homeschooling her.  My little over achiever wanted TWO lessons today, so who was I to say no?  This is the curriculum I am using, so far I love it! Colorful and fun activities!!!!!!  Praise the Lord, it came through Zulilly last week for $14, so I snatched it up!  If you aren’t part of Zulily yet, you are missing out.

  In addition to this curriculum, I have gotten shoes for Tylan for $8, you will see them in his photo below.  Rather than buying one pair for $30, I was able to get him THREE pairs of shoes for less than that last year!!!!!! How fun to have different shoes to go with his different colored uniforms. 

  I have also gotten some neat, hands on Christmas gifts tucked away, and talk about great photo props! I am in HEAVEN!

  If you sign up so that you can receive their emails full of discount boutique items, I would be so blessed if you would use my referral link! 

Thank you! 🙂


  Back to School morning would not be complete without photographs and collages!  They have changed SOOOO much since last year!!!!  Take a peek here.  Eeek! How is that even possible!?

Destiny is in her LAST year of Elementary school…….

Destiny School Collage

This is Tylan’s first year to be at school ALL day.  He was very excited to skip nap time and eat lunch at school ON A TRAY! Too cool!

Tylan School Collage

Avery will be ready for Kindergarten next year! She is such a good little student, blessed to have her home one more year.  There would’ve been some serious boo-hooing yesterday morning if I only had one left at home!!!!

Avery School Collage

  And although he was not dressed for the occasion AT ALL, Mr. Pax INSISTED he get a photo shoot too!  Ok buddy, you are pretty darn cute in your jammies, pull up, crocs and the ever important noise reducing ear plugs.

Paxton Collage

Happy Back to School everyone!  Here’s to a great year….



Post 1: Tylan’s Kindergarten Graduation

Tylan is done with Kindergarten! He graduated last night. 

Grad 1

They sang cute songs and recited their Bible Verses.Grad 2

Destiny was so proud to get to run the video camera tonight.  Paxton thought it would only be fair if he would get a turn too. Grad 3

I love how it slid down his wrist, but he just kept at it! Grad 4   

   Ty’s teachers handed out the neatest awards, each child had an award that matched a Candy: Life Saver, Whopper, Smarties etc.  Tylan recieved the Mr. Goodbar award, for being a good friend to his classmates.Grad 5

  They had a video interviewing each Kindergartener about their favorite part of the year.  Tylan’s favorite was Recess, and Bible Stories, Samson in particular.  Why? Because he is STRONG!  What happened to Samson? He knocked down the building where they worshiped other gods.

  See that right hand picture below, we call that “The Ty Face” not sure why he does it, but there is was in all it’s glory on the big screen mid interview!

Grad 6

  Can’t believe my big boy is already done with half day Kindergarten. Thinking about him being gone all day in First Grade makes me want to cry!!!!!!!

Grad 7

Head to post 2 today for some yummy Peanut Butter Brownie Bites! ~T

Birthday Fun & Layered Ice Cream Cake

   I told you on Friday, that sweet Tylan has been waiting 6 WHOLE MONTHS, for his turn at a birthday!  All 3 of his siblings were born in the summer, AND he had to endure the girls’ two half birthday celebrations at school yet, too. 

FINALLY, his turn came!

  The rule at our house for the Birthday kiddo, is you don’t have to do ANY of your normal chores, the other kids have to do them.  They get to pick the food we eat, and the cake they want for dessert that night.  They get 3 gifts, just like at Christmas, that are opened before dinner.  Oh my, was he ever on cloud 9!

  He received a wooden marble works set, a stomp rocket and a bike from us.  {Someone gave us this bike for free. What a blessing!} 

Collage 1Collage 2Collage 3Collage 4Collage 5

  From other family members he received $6, Target gift card and new roller blades, which he insisted on wearing to dinner.

Collage 6Collage 7

  Speaking of dinner:

Tylan LOVES Mac & Cheese.


Not Mom’s homemade, nope, the boxed stuff.  Bleh.

  Ok, buddy, good thing its your birthday, cause this is a special treat!


  I told him we needed to make his dinner selection a bit more filling, since Great Grandpa Beckler got to come home from the nursing home, and others would be joining us.

So we turned 2 boxes into Mac & Cheese Lasagna, click picture below for recipe.  With served this with regular Mac & Cheese on the side.  Now that is a high quality meal right there, folks.  OH, and a big tossed salad so we had SOMETHING healthy!!!!!!  🙂


He got to pick 2 desserts, one for his school party, and one for home.

For school he picked Dirt & Worm Cake, which I will share the recipe for in Post 2 for today.  I loved hearing him whisper to everyone, “Don’t worry, it’s not REAL dirt.”

Collage 10

For home, he picked a childhood favorite of mine.  Ice Cream Cake!!! 


It’s very simple actually:

Bake an Angel Food Cake, cool then divide in 3rds if its round, 4ths if you do 2 loaf pans like I did.  {discarding or consuming the extra layer}

Have your birthday boy or girl select TWO kinds of ice cream, allow them to soften just a bit for easier moldablity.  {ice cream combo ideas listed on recipe}

Fill as pictured above, trying to keep cake level.  I used over half of both ice creams.  Then cover the whole thing in Extra Creamy Cool Whip.  Freeze until serving.


  Soooo simple, but soooo good!  Printable recipe here.

Time to sing and EAT!

Collage 8

  Our Florida family even got to sing Happy Birthday with us, via Facetime!

Collage 9

  Ty says it was the best day EVER!


birthday collage

First Day of School 2012

   This is post 2 for today, head back 1 post to drool over an Applebee’s Copy Cat salad!

   I have thought and thought, and I still can’t figure out how summer is over already?!  I want my babies home with me ALLLLL the time.

  But alas, another school year has begun, as of August 22nd for the big kids and September 5th for my lil’ Peanut, Avery.  Guess that means 3 days a week, it’s just me and Paxton.  Wow.

{crickets chirping}

  The silence is deafening!

  Better late than never, here are our first day of school pics for 2012:

First Day of School collage text



4th grade:


Missing the big kids already……


September 5th,  Avery’s turn!  She complained of a tummy ache, but soon got over her butterflies. Especially when she saw what outfit I had laid out.  🙂


First Day of Preschool text

IMG_3964IMG_3969 intrepidIMG_3976IMG_3978IMG_3981IMG_3983


  It’s just you and me buddy……


“Wanna go play, Momma?”



Birthday Fun

  Yesterday was Tylan’s 5th birthday!   We do big family parties for 1st and 2nd birthday’s, but after that we choose not to do large parties.  Too many gifts, too much hoopla.  Growing up, we got to pick what we wanted for supper, maybe have a friend over, and we didn’t have to do chores all day long.  This is a tradition we have decided to pass on to our kiddos!!!!  SO, this means Tylan didn’t have to make his bed, or clear his breakfast dishes or unload the dishwasher.  He had  a lot of fun watching the girls do his chores, and they had a great attitude about it.  🙂

  They also get to pick what birthday treat they want to make for their school friends/evening party.

  He wanted Lego Cookies this year:


  I found this recipe via Karenpie, and this is her photo above.  It seemed simple enough, but as of 11 pm last night (on Valentines Night of all things) Dale and I finally scrapped the whole thing and switched gears.  Let’s just say simple wasn’t as simple as I first thought, and icing and flooding……not my thing!

  So we took the rectangle cookies and turned them into these:


That’s still fun, right?!  🙂


With the leftover dough, we made stars for the evening part of Ty’s birthday.

Note to self: mini stars are cute and fun, UNTIL its time to frost them.  Holy cow, I think I frosted cookies right up until it was time to head to dinner!  This platter isn’t even half of them!!!!!


Here are the pictures from the rest of our evening:


BBQ Chicken Jalapeno is one of my FAVORITES!!!!


So is the Greek Pizza!


After dinner, we headed over to Great Grandpa & Grandma’s house for Star cookies and presents:


Our birthday kids get 3 gifts from us, just like Christmas.  I had fun shopping at an old fashioned toy section of a local specialty grocery store.




Sweet Great Grandma provided us with 5 candles since we didn’t have a cake to poke any in.


Thanks everyone for a great evening!


Tylan was THRILLED to have you join in his special day!


Happy Birthday, Buddy!

  Happy Birthday to my precious, Tylan!

I can’t believe you are 5 today!


  How awesome, that our 1st miracle baby, after 4 miscarriages, was conceived on our anniversary and due on Valentines Day!

  But, you wanted your own Birthday and God had a special one picked out for you:

February 15th at 7:11 pm

The same time to the MINUTE, that your big sister was born, what are the odds?!?!!

011 (3)Ty 1 wk10 days oldStud muffin 07good sisterfergusons_1052

  You fill our home with such joy!  (and mischief)  🙂


  Your little giggle can always make me grin.  I love when you come up to me and tug my sleeve so I will bend down for a kiss. 

pilot ty

  I love your tender heart and desire to be a gentleman at such a young age.  I pray for you to be a Godly man, full of honor and integrity, I pray you have a covenant with your eyes to not look upon anything impure.  I pray you will hide God’s word in your heart and be the Godly leader of your home one day.  I pray for Jesus to be real to you, so that you would never stray from the teachings of the Bible, the church or this home.

  Tylan, you are our special gift from God, and I will NEVER forget the moment I held you in my arms and thanked my Heavenly Father for the gift of life after so many losses, the gift of YOU!!!!!  He knew we needed you.

012 (2)

  Tylan Zachary means “God remembered”, but you know what?

   He never forgot your momma. He just needed me to learn to let go of my own hopes and dreams, so He could bless our family far beyond anything we had imagined.


I love you, buddy!  Happy 5th Birthday!

~Mommy  xoxo


Fish, Fish & More Fish

I wanted the title to look like this:

<º))))><, <º))))>< & More <º))))><

Get it?!

{pats self on back}

Fish <º))))><,  Fish <º))))>< & More Fish <º))))><

But, WordPress wouldn’t let me do symbols for a title, Meanies!

I was pretty darn proud of myself for thinking of it.  In FACT, I may or may not be a Closet Genius.  Well that, or it’s 11:14 pm and I may or may not be a bit delirious with lack of sleep from an uber-busy wedding weekend!  (I was asked to plan, set up, coordinate and photograph a wedding for a friend from church & his bride from Thailand.)

  The wedding went great, thanks for asking. I was thankful for my 2 momma’s help: Mom and Mom in Law.  I couldn’t have done it without them! Oh and I was thankful for Dale coming with the kids, to help tear down while I did the after-wedding photo shoot.  Running around being photographer but still trying to run the show was hard work!  I have 700+ photos to edit, but hope to get them done, and share them with you this week sometime.  Thanks for your prayers!!!! 🙂  And A HUGE thank you to Lenatte, who swooped in with her stylish basket full of floral gear to redo some ugly flower arrangements after my panicked phone call.  BLESS YOU, friend!!!!!!!

Goin’ Fishin’:


  Tylan decided he needed to practice his cast during nap time the other day, so he could be ready when Daddy takes him fishing. 


He got pretty good, casting all the way to the front porch from our picnic table, er, I mean, his boat.  He is SO excited to show Daddy!


  Fisher of Men:


  I am so proud to be part of a church so involved in community outreach.  Did you know that our church offered free tickets to the State Fair to the community?!  All they asked in return, was that if you accepted a ticket, you’d attend a 10 am service at an arena within the Fair grounds.  Seriously!

  Our church building was empty on Sunday, because we all went to the State Fair to worship.



It was AMAZING!  Rainy, but amazing. To see people pouring in as the rains poured down, incredible!  To see Fair workers there with hands raised in worship, awesome!


  Mark 16:15 “He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.’”



Oh, & praise the Lord, if they didn’t have some smokin’ HOT ushers there: 



{He’s taken!}

Here are some photos of the rest of the day:



There is a different Butter sculpture every year, this year was apparently a monkey riding a sheep.  We Kansans are easily amused.  🙂


Lunch was GOOOOOD!


  Check out this booth we found at the fair!!


Free, personalized, John 3:16 Horseshoes.  While you wait, they share the good news of Jesus Christ. They told us that 90 have come to know Jesus through this ministry at the 2011 Ks State Fair.

Praise the Lord!


  In going with the fish theme, it’s only right that I share a Salmon recipe with you today before I go……

It is decadent, rich and delicious!

Orange Cilantro Glazed Salmon



  • 4 whole Salmon Fillets
  • 1 cup Orange Juice
  • 4-½ teaspoons Finely Chopped Red Onion
  • 4-½ teaspoons Lime Juice
  • 1 teaspoon Chili Powder (I Did Half As Much)
  • 1 teaspoon Honey Dijon Mustard
  • ½ cups Italian Salad Dressing
  • 4 teaspoons Minced Fresh Cilantro
  • Salt And Pepper
  • Olive Oil

Place orange juice in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, cooking until liquid is reduced to 1/4 cup. Cool slightly.
In a small bowl, whisk together onion, cilantro, lime juice, seasonings and mustard.
Season fillets with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, cook filets for 2 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
Remove fillets to baking pan. Brush generously with orange mixture and bake at 400* for 10 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Matthew 4:19 “”Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.”


This post linked to:

Wonka Wednesday at Hugs & Cookies

This Chick Cooks

Miz Helen’s Full Plate Thursday

And Then There Were 2….

  I have a “MOM, What’s for Dinner?” Recipe for you. Well, not really a recipe, more of a throw it all together sorta thing.

I had nothing planned for dinner, which is unusual for me. I love to try new recipes and usually have one picked out in the morning and prepping supper by mid afternoon.  On this particular night, it was already 5:30, and we had just walked in the door from a SUPER busy day.  The kids tummies were going off and the clock was ticking. Hmm, no money for frivolities like take out or pizza delivery, so it was time to come up with something, and QUICK!

Here is what I made:



Let’s call it Garden Italian Creme Pizza.  OR “MOM! What’s for Dinner? Pizza”.

I had one of these Philadelphia Cooking Cremes that I got for next to nothing with a coupon, yay!  And a garden full of basil, jalapenos and red peppers.  I also had a container of tomatoes that needed to be used. Hmm, what could I make?! 


 I took 2 crescents (set out for a bit to soften) and spread them into my bar pan from Pampered Chef, you could easily half this and make a circle pizza. I think circle pizzas taste better in general!!!! Dale thinks I am nuts.

“Shapes don’t make a difference.”  Uh yeah, they do.  Why do you think no one wants to share the first bite of pie? You have to eat the tip, its part of the yum factor!

  Back to the non-recipe recipe.  Ok, I just made a crust.  Bake it until starting to turn golden brown, probably 425* for maybe 15 minutes? I can’t recall, just watch it closely and remember, it’ll go back in the oven again.

Next, spread crust with Italian Cheese and Herb Cooking crème.  I used almost the whole thing for my big rectangle pizza, so 1 circle pizza would use half.

  Wash and thinly slice 1 red pepper, seed & thinly slice 4 fresh jalapenos and thinly slice your basil leaves as well.  Sprinkle all these garden goodies over your crème sauce.  Top with mozzarella cheese (FRESH if you have time, which I didn’t) and top with tomato halves.  Back in the oven it goes, just until the cheese is gooey, remember your crust is already baked.

OH MY WORD! We have had this TWICE now, and I don’t repeat recipes. It was that good!

In other news, Tylan started preschool yesterday! 


Please excuse his butchered head of hair, er, lack of hair?  He dipped when I dodged and snip…bye-bye long bangs that I loved.  I’ve cut his hair always, but of COURSE this happens the week before school starts!!!!!  Thankfully his luscious locks grow super fast and my little curly head will return quickly, but poor kid, talk about locking into history a rather AKWARD moment!!!!  🙂


“Oh look, here is a photo of Tylan on his first day of preschool.”

Mom! What happened to my hair?”

“Sorry son.”

He’ll forgive me, right?!



  Ok, it’s time for school, Buddy! 

011And then there were 2……