Friday, December 26, 2014

Merry Christmas 2015

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace." - Isaiah 9:6

Friday, December 19, 2014

A Peek Into The Future, A Glimpse Into The Past

I am usually not one to be very sentimental. Traditional - for sure, but not sappy sentimental.  However, when I saw this idea on a blog I follow, it struck a chord with me and I had to try it out.  And what better timing than on Matt and My 5th Wedding Anniversary.  Lilly and I played dress-up in Mama's wedding costume (as she referred to it) and captured some photos that hopefully someday she will cherish, long after the dress turns yellow and it has been relegated to the attic.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Christmas Program 2014

At Lilly's school they decided to combine the Preschool (3 year olds) and the Pre-K (4 year olds) classes together to do a mini-holiday concert.  Ms. Shanan & Ms. Gabby did a great job getting the prepared.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

A Merry Knoll Christmas

It was Knoll Family Christmas time the first weekend in December when Grandma Wendy and Grandpa Mark were able to make the long trip out to Michigan before the weather gets too bad.  Lilly of course loves the idea of early Christmas just as the Christmas Season is getting underway, she asks us every day if it's Christmas Eve today.  Grandma and Grandpa also love to see the excitement and delight in Lilly's eyes when she gets to greet them in person instead of on Daddy's phone, and get to hear all of the fun activities she has planned.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Lillian Grace: 43 Months

Forty-Three Months
"Big, Small.  Short, Tall.  Left, Right.  Front, Back.  Short, Small!  Big, Tall! Pals All!
~Big, small!  Pals, all! By Disney Enterprises

Tuesday, November 18, 2014


November has been filled with sports.  We took a trip to Allendale to see Andrea play volleyball, which was very intense.  Then, Lilly got into the action with one of her weekly trips to the gym.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Although, We've Come To The End Of Swimlane ONE ....

I think I already mentioned how much we have enjoyed the Goldfish Swim school in Grand Rapids.  We are so happy to see the progress Lillian has made in just a few short weeks, in fact she is already moving up to Junior 2.  But we will be sad to say goodbye to Mr. Nate.  Most classes it was one-on-one attention for Lilly, so it will be extra sad to move up.  But fingers crossed, we will have Mr. Nate when she gets up to Beginner Level in a year.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Lillian Grace: 42 Months

Forty-Two Months
"Big, Small.  Short, Tall.  Left, Right.  Front, Back.  Short, Small!  Big, Tall! Pals All!
~Big, small!  Pals, all! By Disney Enterprises

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The Luckiest

Matt and I had a delightful spur of the moment Date Night.  Lilly got to spend time with Aunnie, Jake and Emma and we got to spend time with the GR Symphony and Ben Folds.  Having seen him many times I was not disappointed to see him again and it was so cool to see him with the symphony.  There is no doubt that he is extremely musically talented.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Emma's Baptism

We celebrated Emma's baptism on Sunday, Lilly was so excited to give Emma a special bracelet we had made for her, it almost matched the one Lilly had at her baptism.  She also loved singing with the adults and making sure EVERYONE knew Emma was HER cousin.  It was a very special day for everyone.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

A (Fake) Sick Day

Tuesday is a Mamma and Lilly day, this past Tuesday it was Lilly, Emma & Mamma day.  Emma had a sick day, or at least she faked sick so she could hang out with us.  Lilly loved taking care of her and was pretty confidant I didn't need to help at all.  Of course, there were the few times she requested help, like anytime she got bored of the fact that Emma was not talking or crawling or doing something entertaining.  Oh, well it is a start!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Back Into Swim Lessons ... Hooray!

Lillian has been in swimming lessons since she was 4 months old.  She just loves the water and it has become such a great outlet for her energy.  We were so lucky to start off with some great swim instructors at our local health club, but when the facility closed, we had a hard time finding a good fit again.  After several tries in classes that were too big, or too long, or too unstructured ... we are happy we tried Goldfish.  So far she is really excelling with Mr. Nate and we are looking forward to having continued great experiences in the water.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

It Is Still Summer, Right?

It seems like last year at this time, we were in the pool, enjoying an Indian Summer.  This year we spent the last week in cozy fleece and rain gear.  Which has been conducive for our home improvement projects, but not for our hope to enjoy the last days of Summer.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Happy Birthday Namma

Over the past weekend we celebrated Namma's Birthday.  Lilly was very excited to throw the party.  She organized the coordinating cups, plates, balloons and headbands.  She had to choose orange and pink, since orange is Namma's favorite color.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Lillian Grace: 40 Months

Forty Months
"Eyes so bright and laughter fair, he buys a pink bow for her hair.  He loves her more than words can say, his princess, born this happy day.
~Always Daddy's Princess By Karen Kingsbury

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Monday, August 11, 2014

Just Imagine How Much Cooler I’ll Be In Summer

During the "Dog Days of Summer," I long for a pool.  An in-ground pool, with heated water and lots of lounge chairs for friends.  That dream is still a few years away.  And with that we do our best ... 10ft inflatable pool from Target, water straight from the on-demand hot water heater, and 2 lounge chairs.  It is the same .. for now.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Lillian Grace: 39 Months

Thirty-Nine Months
"You were the first ... You were the first to sleep in the basket with the yellow ribbon wound round.  You were the first to cry.  The first to smile.  You were the first to lift your head, to look at the trees and the flowers and the sky.
~You Were The First By Patricia MacLachlan

Monday, August 4, 2014

She's A Little Bit Country

I have to keep Lillian in the country a little bit, even if it is only a yearly trip to the fair.  Over the past 3 years she has been hot and cold about the animals, this year, she was a little cool.  But she enjoyed the day out with GiGi and Papa.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

MI Adventure Girl

Nothing beats family togetherness and nothing brings family closer then Michigan's Adventure.  A quote ringing especially true when it is only 68 degrees out on July 28.  However, joking about the weather aside, it was a PERFECT day to visit.  No lines, No worries about chlorine spills in the water park, No attacks of heat stroke.  Can't ask for much more than that.  Lillian Grace had so much fun on her special trip with GiGi and Papa.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Lake Weekend

We had a WILD and CRAZY time visiting the Miller's lake house.  Lilly and Shandi, make sure that every moment is memory worthy and that the adults are on our toes as the navigate the ups and downs of friendship.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The 4th of July ... MN Style

It was a whirlwind trip to Minnesota over the 4th of July Holiday, filled with family, food and fun.  This trip Matt and I didn't do a great job remembering to take pictures, so we missed some of the highlights including; swimming with Cousin Boden, visiting with Great Grandma, Great Grandpa and Randy, watching fireworks, chasing rabbits through the yard, visiting Grandpa's store and getting to pick out doughnuts, and reading and playing Sophia.  We packed in even more fun with a trip to the zoo and children's museum.  Needless to say we had a sleepy girl on the drive home.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Lillian Grace: 38 Months

Thirty-Eight Months
"You were the first ... You were the first to sleep in the basket with the yellow ribbon wound round.  You were the first to cry.  The first to smile.  You were the first to lift your head, to look at the trees and the flowers and the sky.
~You Were The First By Patricia MacLachlan

Monday, June 30, 2014

Monday, June 23, 2014

Monday, June 16, 2014

Welcome Baby Emma Elizabeth

It was an extra special Friday the 13th, nothing bad about that day for us.  In fact it was just the opposite a very exciting and joyful day, as Lillian go to meet her cousin Emma Elizabeth for the very first time.  She was instantly smitten with her and being the Ms. Independent that she is, she was ready for full on Babysitting Duty, including holding her, calming her and dressing her up.  We of course had to start with baby-steps, but I can already see these two are going to have lots of fun growing up together.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Lillian Grace: 37 Months

Thirty-Seven Months
"When all was quiet, the firefly flew through the night flashing its light, looking and searching again.  Then the very lonely firefly saw what it had been looking for.  A group of fireflies, flashing their lights.  Now the firefly wasn't lonely anymore."
~The Very Lonely Firefly By Eric Carle

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Toddler Tuesday At The Children's Museum

It has been such a precious experience to see Shandi and Lilly grow up together.  They were born 6 weeks apart and were instant friends.  However, as with all relationships, they have had their bumps along the way.  Spats about sharing toys, disappointment over taking turns, upset about non-matching toys, etc..  But recently they have turned a new developmental corner and they are now in a "mini-adult" phase.  We recently went to the Children's Museum and I noticed , they have their own conversations that don't involve Teresa and I.  They automatically take turns and sharing she much easier now.  I am so excited to see how their friendship continues to develop over the years.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

A Wild Water Park Weekend

We took a mini-vacation to the Kalahari Resort in Ohio this past weekend and the weather couldn't have been more perfect.  It felt so nice to play in the water outside in the sunny 80 degree weather.  It makes it seem like it is officially Summer up here in the Midwest.  On top of the great weather, we were pleasantly surprised that the resort was not busy, nothing better than being able to ride things over and over again without waiting, perfect for the attention span of a 3 year old.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

It Feels Like Summer In The Greenhouse

This week was time for our annual visit to Countryside Greenhouse to brighten our yard up for Summer.  The first trip Lilly made to the greenhouse was when she was only 3 weeks old, now at 3 years old, she adores the trip.  The past few years we have gone with GiGi and Nana Marge, which makes the day even more fun!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

There Is No Better View, Than From The Top Of The Trees

It is no surprise to those who spend time with Lillian, that she loves to play ... Up High.  She loves to go down the tallest slides, climb the tallest climbing walls, run across shakey bridges and swing extra high.  We often visit some great playgrounds in and around the city, but we thought Lilly would have even more fun with her own Playground in the backyard.  We enlisted the help of lots of family members to help get the giant playset assembled over the weekend.  Lilly is so happy with the result of all the hard work.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Monday, April 28, 2014

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Lillian Grace: 36 Months

Thirty-Six Months
"You may go into the field or down the lane, but do not go into Mr. McGregor's Garden"
~The Tale of Peter Rabbit By Beatrix Potter

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Spring = Poka Dots

We are past the point of being ready to SPRING into Spring.  So much so, that Lilly has been wearing her sun hat and anything that looks like Spring.  For whatever reason in her mind, poka dots represent Spring.  So, even if the dots don't coordinate she is wearing them!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

To Photograph Princesses

We had an absolutely princess-tastic night on Saturday at the Miller house.  Shandi and Lilly had a lot of fun playing together and it was the first time that we didn't have to run interference the entire night.  Out "babies" are growing up.  The girls giggled a ton, shared toothbrushes during an impromptu brushing session, played princess and got in to lots of mischief.  It was AWESOME!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Let's Go Swimming...

When we first started lessons with Lilly, back when she was a few months old, we adopted a theme song .... Let's Go Swimming, Let's Go Swimming, Yeah, Let's Go Swimming...  It is a Laurie Berkner song, that we still sing on the way to lessons.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Lillian Grace: 35 Months

Thirty-Five Months
"Far below the waves a little fish called Stanley lived with his shoal. They were the brightest, sparkliest fish in the whole of the deep, dark sea."
~Bright Stanley By Matt Buckingham

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

A Snow Family In March

The last few days we have had delightful weather...  It has been above freezing and sunny!  Which is actually pretty sad, considering it is March.  However, Lilly has found this makes for perfect times playing in the snow.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Princess Mania ...

One of our favorite things about living in Grand Rapids is the endless amount of things to do.  And unlike in larger cities, usually things are not sold out, so events like Disney Princesses on Ice can be a spur of the moment decision.  We are so happy we made this last minute plan, Lillian was so excited and memorized by the event and it seemed to get her even more excited for her Birthday Trip in April.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

A Grand Day At The Gardens

This past Saturday was beautiful considering it is STILL Winter and it was STILL super cold out.  But the sun was shining and we took advantage of it by visiting the Meijer Gardens.  It is not quite Butterfly Time yet, but we had the pleasant surprise of getting to see some of the early bloomers.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Happy Valentines Day

We had a very fun Valentines Day dinner at one of the local Hibachi restaurant celebrating with Aunnie & Uncle Jake.  At first Lilly was a little underwhelmed with the flames at the table, but she quickly got used to it and was content to converse with the Chef and eat as much rice has her little stomach could handle.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Meet Lillian - Design Guru

A few months ago, Lilly got to come along to an event on campus with me. Afterwards, we made a trip to my office and Lillian made it clear that it was boring and I needed some 'corations.  So, with her help I was finally able to currate a few things on my walls and bookcases.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014