Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Wow! It has been too long!

I knew it had been a while since I had been on here but I didn't realize it had been about five months. Summers are really busy. I have summer camps, VBS, and the KidzRetreat. All of those things went so smoothly and were very successful. The retreat was the best. I really enjoyed my time there with the kids and the middle school kids.

Not much has changed here. Lilly is in second grade now. She is struggling with it all. However, I have read some things that I hope will begin helping her.
Ella Cate us doing a lot of the same work as Lilly but not as much. She still needs to relax and play. She is a super star around here though!

Daniel is quit the little man. He makes friends everywhere he goes. He rode a mechanical bull at the fair. He petted a shark at the aquarium. He has no fear but still begs mommy to snuggle with him each day.
Rachel has surpassed walking and is now running and dancing everywhere!

Layne and I still spend most of our time at church doing work there and he still has his regular job. I have a part time job at Lilly's school. Upward Basketball will be starting soon so I won't get to spend as much time with him.

I will get on my other computer, which I fixed myself and post some pics. Oddly enough, I fixed it but it doesn't run as well. Hmmm....

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

WOW - I hadn't realized that my last posting was before Ella Cate was admitted to the hospital. So much has been going on.

Ella Cate was very sick back in April. We ended up rushing her to the hospital and she stayed for an entire weekend. It was a very exhausting process. She still isn't back to normal. She gets tired very easily and has a very odd look in her eyes. So, we will soon be visiting a special doctor to make sure her lungs are functioning correctly.

Daniel has been moved to inhalers from breathing machines, however, the pharmacy won't fill one of the prescriptions...why you ask? I don't know. But they haven't gotten it right yet. I guess he doesn't need it right now. He also turned four and we had a little party. He loved it but was upset b/c I forgot to invite his new best buddy - Westin. Plus it was a cowboy party and he forgot to wear his boots. But he did have fun. However, the only parts he remembers are those 2 I mentioned above.

Lilly has graduated from first grade. I was going to go all out and have a big party but I am out of time and energy. I am soooooo glad homeschool is over. We will still be doing school throughout the summer but not on a daily, sit-down and work it out basis. NOTE - SHE CAN READ!!!!!

Ella Cate finished her first grade work also - She can read also!
Rachel has become a constant companion. She won't leave my side. This has good parts and bad parts. She has become very whiney and she falls and busts her mouth open at least twice a week. She did it twice yesterday. Since her tooth is half gone, she open up that space between her teeth each time she falls. So, blood goes everywhere. It looks horrible and as I am cleaning her up, people are looking at me as if to say "One wrong move and I'll call DFCS" but she isn't really hurt, she just can't go long enough to let that place heal.

Layne will be taking the Middle School group at church to a camp this weekend without me. I coudn't find a sitter so I will be hanging with the kids. I think the girls and I might do some fun things to celebrate school being over.

I don't have much going on. Just camps and retreats during the summer. I have a new machine someone donated to the Kids Group - a cricut create. I have been doing all kinds of stuff on it and have revamped my camps to allow me to use this awesome machine with the kids. I think they will love it.

VBS is approaching - Bring the kids!!! We are going to have a blast and the crafts are going to be the greatest!!

Sorry I got no fun or cool or funny news - Just life happening - I had a Thrity-One Party and lots of people came and we had fun. My house is clean. Rachel is in a twin bed. Daniel is in a tent. The kitchen is almost done(waiting on my BIL to help me add some doors btu he is heading to TX this week).

Life is happening and it is happening fast. I can't make it through the day without my Lord. praise God that we can enjoy this life and look forward to the next one.

Now I have to go - I have about 47 million things to get done before church tonight. I promise to add some wonderful things over the next week. When I am not tired from working out.

Oh yeah - I got up and worked out this morning - Ella Cate walked in and told me I looked like I had lost a lot of weight...So the workout was over!!! yay!!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Well - Rachel had to have an abdominal xray today. Just a precaution we think...we hope. We are praying that this is just something that needed to be done so that we can figure out why her tummy gets swollen and she has such problems with...well, poop. So this is just an update for you all to know she is doing fact, the 4 shots she got at her check-up today were the worst part. **Sniff sniff---- Gross, perhaps the poop issue has resolved itself...Need to go change a diaper.

Monday, April 19, 2010

The Party

at the park the next day

Okay - so I last posted that it was Lilly's 7th birthday and we were very excited. We got the food ready(Stouffer's Lasagna) and the cake(really bad for you homemade icecream cake) and the gifts bought(yep - last minute). Lilly had lunch with Grandma J which ended up being all day because they took Old Pop(Layne's grandaddy) to a med-stop and waited for 3 hours.

Well, they fianlly made it home in time to find a giant inflatable cake in the drive-way. The we came in and ate. DELICIOUS!!! We went outside to give her her first gift - A hitchhiker to attach to DADDY's bike(not mom's) which she loves!!! She can ride and not pedal...hmmmm I sense a lazy streak happening here.

While outside, Ella Cate posed for some pics and then realized she was covered in ants...just one bit though. She panick though, this was not her first encoutner with ants. She ran inside and had to get a bath.

Once she was done we opened gifts to give Uncle Ned time to eat. He hadn't planned on coming due to classes but got out early and came over. After reading his card about how sorry he was for not being was cake time!

Rachel quietly reads a book - unaware of any upcomng danger....yeah - she is 18 months old and can read - we homeschool (KIDDING)

I got the cake out, placed the candles on it and took pictures....So happy that this party was going so well. I was very excited!!! The kids were too. The soon began sing the Birthday song and Lilly blew out the candles. I turned, ready to cut the cake and celebrate....THUD!!! CRYING!!!! SCREAMS!!! YELLING!!!!! - What happened? Had I dropped the cake? No. Had someone fallen? Sort of.

I ran back in to take charge of the situation...Ella Cate had been standing on the sofa...she fell off...Lucky for her Rachel broke her fall...unfortunately for Rachel, the fall broke her tooth.
I gathered her into my arms and tried to wipe the blood away. Her teeth looked funny(we didn't know it was broken yet). My mind raced back to 2007 when Lilly had to have her tooth removed for falling and forcing it up into her gums....Oh no!! her teeth just didn't look right. I told Layne and he pried the child from my hands. He finally sees her tooth is broken. Grandma J does a finger sweep and finds to tooth. Her others are loose. We are devasted. Ella Cate is sure she has killed her sister and is crying in her room(where she was forced to remain all night). In the midst of calling dentists and scolding kids, Lilly looks up as says "This is the worst party ever!"

Before - isn't she adorable - see her cute teeth??
After - still cute but different....
Sorry Lilly Bean but it will never be forgotten. We will make it up to you. We will go out for a fancy dinner for the whole family, and we will not ask to sit in the back or near the restrooms. We will not get frustrated as you make messes at the table and end up not eating your dinner. We will dress you in diamonds and pearls and treat you like a Queen...oh wait, I will just take you to the park and let you play. That will do it.

**Rachel is fine - teeth tightened up- cracked tooth is not sharp
**Ella Cate is fine - emotionally shattered but fine
**Lilly - got to go to the park - she is happy(and lost a tooth herself the next week)
**Daniel - most likely doesn't remember it happened.
**Layne - survived -- but his stress level was raised about 4,000 notches
**Sandy - well - I am fine - not much happened to me!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Happy Birthday Lilly

Lilly is 7 today!!!!

(Keep scrolling)

Mommy and Lilly on her second Easter.

Why Uncle E will never dress her again...

Lilly stole all the candy!!!

Her second Easter....

Cupey baby

"Sleeping" on the church steps

WOW!!! I have been super busy. I spent 2 weeks re-painting my entire kitchen...I painted everything and I will post pics soon but I have been a bit busy and haven't cleaned or done laundry in 2 PRIORITIES!!!

Anyway, today my Lilly-bean turns 7. Where has the time gone? It seems like just yesterday we were eating dinner at a friends and her 6 month old was jumping on my belly trying to get her new best friend out. The next morning, I knew it was time so Layne called in to work and we headed to the hospital...but they sent me home and said to rest. So I did for a few hours but the contractions were getting closer. So we headed back. They let me stay. I did over-exaggerate the pain because I did not want to have a baby at home. It was my first baby and I was scared to death. I ordered an epidural right away(mistake) but I soon could not feel my legs....if only the pain were in my legs. So, I laid there for hours...waiting. And then it all began. Everyone got ready and within moments...and a few "Holy Moley's" Lillian Gabriella Chastain was born. She wasn't breathing well on her own so they rushed her away immediately but she recovered quickly and I was allowed to hold her. Then Layne was permitted to parade her through the hospital to show her off to friends(they don't really allow that anymore). She was born late so we didn't have to worry about visitors that night. He and I were able to rest while they kept her in the nursery(mainly due to the breathing thing) and we got to go and visit her through the glass. Then they let us have her back. She cried A LOT!!!! Not loud but a very sad noise that I couldn't handle after such a long day so we sent her back...and slept. Oddly enough, she slept also. She slept each time we sent her to the we sent her alot. Everyone came to visit and it made me very happy. Going home was a treat. We had banners and food everywhere. And my baby girl made my life complete...this tiny thing that I thought was going to be the end of it all...was really just the beginning. She has been a blessing ever since...sometimes, blessings come in a storm...which is mainly how she blesses me. She is hard-headed and is a perfectionist. She is Layne all over and I suffer trying to figure her out...but I would be lost without her.

Right after she was born, I remember looking up at Layne and saying, "Let's have another"....but boy-oh-boy, I didn't mean just 18 months later.


Lilly and Annie - Best of Freinds

Lilly and Isaac - true love??

Happy Birthday Sweet-Bean!!!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Seven Year Itch

Okay - there will be no new posts for a few days or pics right now. I went insane and decided to re-paint my kitchen, hallway, bathroom and living room. along with raising four kids, homeschool, homemakign duties, and my part-time job at FEC. So, last week, my BIL sanded down the cabinets and window sill that were....well, lots of colors. I primed a lot of stuff and have a painted a little bit. Painting is tough with 4 kids home with you. I primed some things outside Friday and when I finished they were white. When I went back to check they were the prettiest shade of Pollen Yellow. So, God just wanted to brighten up my day by coated everything we own in my favorite color. Love it!!!
So - I hope to post pics but since I forgot to take before pics....we will see. But it will look great. And if it doesn't, I will post pics of someone else's kitchen and you will never know :)

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Alomst 33

Well, a lot has been going on since I began my 40 days with God...just not what I wanted to happen. I thought that I would have lots of time with God. That was the whole point. Instead, my life has been the same. I clean a house that never stays clean, I cook, wash, fold, pick-up things, plan get the idea. So at this point, my 40 days has just been me praying while I try to find food to eat and while my tummy growls uncontrollably 23 hours a day. However, I am not ready to give up. I have pinpointed the problem so hopefully I can fix it.

Besides that, I have some pics to show. At this second, no one is sick. Yes, everyone but Layne has a cough but no one is actually sick. Rachel is teething(like 12 teeth at a time) but not sick. We fianally got fish for our tank that we bought for Valentine's Day. The girls got haircuts and we have just been having fun since Upward Basketball is over. It was nice to have Layne home this week. Being at church is great, don't get me wrong, but when one or all of us have to be there every single night of the begin to miss being a family. So it has been a loooooong three months. Well, I have to go. I will post pictures, then feed out fish, and the eat a wonderful breakfast of fiber crackers and lettuce. YUMMY!!!!
ok so we didn't go to Mrs. Lori(mistake I know but she is always booked and I am a spur-of-the-moment kinda girl). This lady said- I am going to clean up her bang. I thought okay, she doesn't have bangs. I turn around five minutes later and BANG!!! I mean- BANGS. I am still trying hard not to cry.

Lilly lives for pampering!!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


So, Lent has begun for many. I am sure many of you have already chosen your "thing" to sacrifce. I have heard many ownderful ideas: Facebook, coffee, soda's, tv, work....just to name a few. Before I explain what I am giving up, I want to clear a few things up first.

Due to my personal veiws on certain things, I will not longer refer to it as Lent. I have decided to take this up as my own struggle and will be calling it "40 days with God". To me, calling it lent put too much attention on that fact that I have given up something for God...oh how wonderful I am. Also, I think that in order for me to fully do what needs to be done, I have to remind myself of what the purpose is. I am spending 40 days with God.

I do participate in Lent - like activities. I am not Catholic and do not support the Catholic church. I an a Christian but I do like the idea of sacrificing something for 40 days just as Christ did in the desert. .

In the past, I have given up tv, all drinks besides water, fast foods, music, coffee, desserts, pretty much the same things everyone gives up. Now, I am in no way implying that if you gave up any of those things then your sacrifice is no good. Those are great things to give up. Anything that takes up time that could be otherwise given to God is worth giving up. But for me, this year needs to be different.

It is easy to give up all drinks but water. I like water. So the sacrifice is there but minimul for me. I rarely watch tv and when I give it up, I don't use that time for Christ. So that just didn't work well for me. Giving up fast food isn't really a sacrifice since we don't eat it much. So this year I found myself at a loss. What could I give up? How do I spend my time? Well, I find a few minutes a week to blog, be on facebook, check email and such so that wouldn't be a sacrifice. Part of me wishes to give these things up so I could rest and not work so much. Which leads me to the other way I spend my Can't really give that up. I thought I had it when I decided to give up laundry and use the hours each day I normally spend washing and folding, rejoicing God that I didn't have to do it....but that wouldn't be a sacrifice. So what to do?????

Well, ar first I thought this was God's way of telling me I was good. There was no need to give up anything for Him. I mean, come on, this isn't a must do kind-a-thang. I am not Catholic. God hasn't given me any ideas so I must be in pretty good shape...right?

Well, not really. He had been laying something in my path for a while that He has deemed no good. it sin't something that I spend lots of time with. But the after effects do take up lots of time and mind power. There is somethng in my life that I don't necessarily put before God, but it takes up time that could be more wisely spent. It would be a hug deal to give it up. It will be hard. It will take almost an hour-by-hour sacrifice. Something that has already, this morning, proven it will take every bit of will I have in order to follow through... I have given up processed foods....yes people - I have gone insane and for 40 days and 40 nights I can't eat anything that tastes good. Some of you are out there screaming "NO!!!! DON'T DO IT!!!" - but I have already committed myself with a breakfast of raw carrots. Those of you who really love me have just thought about the fact that my birthday is coming on March 7th. What will I do?? I can't have the icecream cake I have been craving since last year. Will I survive?? I just don't know. Right now, on the table beside me is a pile of Valentine's candy that is calling my name. Perhaps just a taste won't hurt.....GET THEE BEHIND ME SATAN!!!!! I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. So I will be fine. I will be eating lots of Raw things. I will not be giving up milk...I just will not. I also will consider frozen vegies to be fine since freezing them actually helps the vitamins in them stay strong. So, until Sunday(apparently the day of the week you can have anything you want- someone explain why please??) I will be preservative free!!! And I will not cry and scream uncontrollably at meal times....I will thank God for the food and I will spend lots more time with Him than normal since I will have to rely on Him to get me through the cravings....
See you in April!!!!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Snow Beautiful

Last night, our power went out. As I lay on the sofa, staring out at, the brightness of the new fallen snow I could not help be become contemplative. I thought about how beautiful it was and how it must been even more so to God. I am sure He enjoyed looking down on us as we played yesterday and made tracks in the snow. I know He loved all of the prayers sent up by children of all ages, praising Him for His goodness. And then, as everyone piled into their homes to warm up and rest their bodies, He allowed the snow to continue, covering up all proof that we were ever outside. Fresh snow was all around. No footprints, no sled marks. Just a snow man remained. Pristine and untouched. I wondered what the Garden of Eden must have looked like. Surely it was a thousand times more beautiful. I thought about the flood that covered the earth and what it must have looked like from above. I wondered if for one moment, God looked down and smiled at how beautiful this world can be. I know I did.
And then the morning came. It was such a queit and beautiful morning. I walked around and took pictures of the landscape. I looked up into the snow filled trees and noticed they were already melting, ever so slowly. I thanked my Lord for the fact that I am washed white as snow and that my sins, ever the ones that still beat me down, have been forgiven. When Christ looks upon me, I am white as snow!!! And so I am beautiful in His eyes. How AWESOME is My GOD!!!! That He would take a being as dirty and defiled as me, and love me, call me to Him and wash me white as the beautiful snow He allowed to drift into our lives yesterday.
So, as I realized how precious I am to God, I took pictures that I wanted to share here.

My kids enjoyed the SNOW/ice.

Rachie didn't enjoy the outside so much!

But she enjoyed the inside.

Treacherous Driveway!

I always wanted a white christmas - guess I will have to settle for a snow covered tree from the year before.

I love how trees look with the snow or the ice on them. So majestic and beautiful. At the same time, they strike fear in my heart because they are so dangerous.

I love this!