Basement parties in Iowa

We have had some nice rains here over the last week. It made for the perfect conditions to burn off the huge pile of brush we had going in the backyard. Here's a picture of David having fun with the giant bonfire. We got a burn barrel from our friends up the road so now we are burning our trash that is burnable.

This is a picture of a double rainbow out back after a rain. If you went out far enough in the yard, you could see the whole rainbow. I think this was after the storm that produced two tornados in the area. Only an F1 and F2, so not too bad. One of the towns hit was Norwalk, where our church is located. We got to have a basement party with the girls though, since the weather channel on the internet was showing that the tornado was heading for Carlisle. (It ended up going south of us by about 6 miles) Anyway, we took the radio and blankets and snacks and went to the basement til the worst of the storm passed by. Trinity is scared of the basement in general, but we have had 2 basement parties and she loves them. :)

Our little Angel taking a nap.

A wildflower bouquet my husband picked for me from our yard.

We picked up a bug catching kit at the dollar store for Trinity. I thought it would be perfect for lightning bugs. This is her new favorite thing to do. Here she is going for the catch...

Checking it out...

Here is Trinity with her best buddy, Lucky. She just loves this dog!

That's it for now! I will try to update again soon.
Grace and peace be with you!

 Images of our life

This is a picture from the night before I left Arizona with the girls. I just loved this picture of Angelina with her grandpa and wanted to share it. :)

This is the first of the many tiger lillies we have growing up by our fence. I thought it was beautiful and it appears to be the only pink one we have. The rest look like they will be red. Dan was telling us that if we let the ditch out in front of the house go instead of mowing it, it is filled with these flowers.

The other day I spread our $8 Salvation army quilt out in the shade under the trees in the backyard and hung out all day with the girls. Angelina played with toys and Trinity ran around in the yard. While we were hanging out, the mower came and cut down the hay field behind our house. Then yesterday, they came and rolled it all up into what I used to call "giant shredded wheats."

The big news of the week is that we have a dog now. After an adventurous trip across to Winterset, home of the famous bridges of Madison County, we adopted Lucky. He is a mix of Great Pyranees and Golden Retriever. He is on a two week trial since I wasn't sure how he would do with the little ones. He is about a year and a half old and has the sweetest disposition. Even when Trinity climbs on him and rides him like a horse when he is laying down, he never protests. For now I have him on a dog run, but eventually I would like to get instafence so he can run around and get plenty of exercise.
Having Lucky here is sure making for some more interesting behavior challenges with Trinity.
As you can see in this picture, she has decided to drink like a dog from the dogs water. Other challenges include:
- getting her to eat her food instead of feeding it to the dog
- letting the dog eat his food instead of hand feeding him
- not dumping his food bowl into the yard
- not dumping out his water bowl
- not putting mud in the water bowl
Other than that, we are adjusting fine to our new addition and I am sleeping more soundly with our new guard on watch at night. :)
Grace and peace be with you!

 Country roads, take me home!

Well, we have been in our new house for a week now.  It will be nice when we actually get our belongings here, but we have what we need to get by for now.  David ended up flying in last Sunday morning and just left last night.  It was so much better having him here to get moved in.  I am just loving Iowa and our new home more every day.  It is so beautiful here and peaceful and everyone is so friendly.  I have seen so many beautiful birds - I'm going to have to go to the library and check out a book so I can start identifying them. The blue, red, and yellow birds I know, but the rest I need to look up!  We are starting to learn our way around the back roads.  Since we live on one of them, it's kind of a necessity!

The best news is we think we have found our new church home.  I had gone to one of the local Calvary's here last Sunday morning before picking David up from the airport.  We met with the small groups on Wednesday which were meeting collectively for a bbq at Easter lake. (beautiful, by the way)  It was a good church service, and a good time at the small group meeting, but we still wanted to check out some other churches. Saturday night we drove out to the westside of Des Moines to Waukee.  There is a larger church there called Point of Grace.  They were having a graduation service for some men from Teen Challenge so we didn't get to experience a true service.  But while the worship was rocking, when the pastor was talking, he started to sound a bit like the television evangelists.  It wasn't leaving me feeling warm and fuzzy.

Sunday morning we were going to go to Calvary again but I was trying to find info on the internet on another church we had seen off the bypass.  I ended up finding the website for a church in Norwalk called Fellowship Community Church. What we read online sounded really good so we decided to try them instead.  We were very pleased with the church and the service - especially when the pastor said that if you didn't have a bible, someone next to you would be happy to share - that the bible is our textbook and you need to bring it with you and read it. Amen! They have a preschool on site and they have Awana, of which I have heard great things.  They just started on a goal of teaching through the bible in 5 years and they did Genesis 4 and 5 this Sunday, so we haven't missed too much. :)

I am going to attempt to post some pics, but I am back in the world of dial up, so we will see if this works!

Here is the front of the house after some serious shrubbery whacking!  There is a house under all those bushes after all!  A little paint and some shutters and it will look darn cute. :)

Grandma Barbara bought Trinity a birdhouse to paint while she was here.  Dad quickly took up the task with her once we had the initial house cleaning done.

Miss Angelina is no longer content to crawl.  She is pulling herself up to standing whenever she gets a chance. This was last Wednesday - the first time we saw her stand up by herself.

Daddy's new toy - a John Deere riding mower we picked up last weekend at a garage sale for $300. I don't know who likes it better - David or Trinity!  We called on our neighbor that I met the weekend before for help in picking the mower up from Indianola. He had just taken his mower in to be serviced so still had the trailer hooked up to the truck - perfect timing! :) (God is sooo good!)  He showed David the local fishing hole on the way over to pick it up.  Interesting to note: the large bush they are going around in the picture is lilac.  There is a whole wall of them across the backyard.  Dan was telling us that they bloom like crazy and fill the whole house with the scent of lilac in the spring.  They are badly neglected and overgrown, so I am already researching how to best prune them next winter so they will continue to thrive for many more years.

So, that is kind of the highlights from the week.  I have just survived my first 24 hours alone with the girls.  God is smiling on me - Trinity fell asleep at 5:45 and is down for the count!  Be praying for me though.  David will be packing up and heading back out here next week with the moving truck.  I will be alone with the girls for at least 9 days.

 On my Own

Well, my mom went home this morning so I am on my own with the girls now. We didn't have to be alone for long. I saw an advertisement on craigslist for a community yard sale and bake sale in Hartford. Hartford is the next small town down route 5 from Carlisle so I figured it might be a place to start meeting some of our neighbors. Trinity was asking to eat, so we stopped in to pick up a map of the sales and grab a hotdog. We were joined at our table by Sally, the lady in the picture with the girls. She is from Carlisle and after talking a bit, we figured out that she was good friends with the original owners of the house we just bought. Another guy came in that she knew and so I got introduced to another neighbor. He is about 4 houses away up the cross street from us. Really nice guy, Bob - gave me all their contact information and said he's pretty handy and let him know if we need any help getting moved in.

Anyway, Sally told us about the Garden Party going on at the Carlisle park, so we all went there together. She is our new adopted grandmother and introduced me all around to people at the craft fair. It was such a beautiful day - cool with a lovely breeze, and the community is so friendly and picturesque. You can see just down the hill behind Sally a couple of horses. They were doing horse drawn wagon rides which we did with the girls. Fearless Trinity sees the giant horses and says, "Ride! Ride!" They had an orchestra band playing music and Trinity was entertaining us with her dancing. It was a lovely afternoon.

My plans for the rest of the day are to try and get Trinity to bed at a decent hour, and watch the Saturday night service at Calvary via the internet. I don't know when I will have internet again after I move into the house on Monday. I have to research satellite companies to get high speed internet. This is my life line right now!