Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread - Proverbs 30:8

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Happy July

taking a moment to find joy in the little things

It's always fun to come back from a week long break and see what's happening in the garden. Some of my favorites are blooming. I love having "waves" of flowers that bloom - the garden keeps changing it's fun to experience each new "wave". 

The girls and I had a great week away at violin camp. I was so happy to find out that our friends from Thailand were passing through our neck of the woods and we enjoyed a short visit with them Saturday morning. Our family is so blessed to have this family in our lives. 

Every year (for the past 3 years) I have bought a praying mantis egg sac for the yard. I've been checking it regularly to see if the babies had hatched and was regularly disappointed to see no signs of life. On Monday I went out and officially decided that this one must have been a dud. A few hours later I was in the yard and noticed this....

lots and lots and lots of praying mantis babies!

Kay's teacher at violin camp had a teeny, tiny, "twinkle" bow and she let the kids give it a try.

Being a parent is hard work. Being a home educating parent is even harder. Being a home educating parent who also teachers her children how to play violin is REALLY hard. I always said I wouldn't teach my children to play violin and sometimes I wish I had listened to myself. My reasoning was that I wanted to be in awe of what my children could do and not always be the expert. 

This is Syd giving me that "look"....I had told her she wasn't holding her bow correctly, but she didn't believe me. Here her institute teacher is showing her how to hold the bow and she's looking at me like "hmmm....maybe mom is right." 

I decided at institute that we need to begin each practice session and lesson with prayer....asking God to give us kind words and patience and act in a way that glorifies Him. It's the only way we'll be able to keep doing this. It probably wouldn't hurt to pray before math lessons, either.


  1. Ha ha ha! Prayer before lessons and math, yes! My kids tell me I need to flip on my "happy switch." :D

  2. Wonderful photos from your garden! Yeah, I like too, how it keeps changing over the whole year...
    And the miracle is happened - you have mantis babys, lovely to see (with us in Germany I dont know, where buy such a egg sac, I've never heard or read about them).
    Have a great time :-)

  3. Those mantis babies are really cool. I've never heard of anything like that.

  4. Hi Jill!
    1. What is that beautiful candy striped flower in the very first picture. It is so pretty as it clusters together.
    2. Gotta tell you, the praying mantis skeeves me out!!! They grow so large and look so fierce. I have been known to refuse to use the front door until Ray took him somewhere else to prey.
    Same thing with stick bugs -only worse if possible. Had an unfortunate encounter with one at age three, and the extreme startle factor has stuck. STICKS ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO WALK!
    Guess the PM and the Stick Bug are stored in the same brain cell in my mind.
    How many survive to adulthood in your yard?
    3. Lovely post as usual! Happy Independence Day!
    xx, m & jb

    1. 1. It's Natasha Meadow Plox - Wild Sweet William. I love it! I have the pink and white striped and all pink.
      2. I used to feel the same way about praying mantis and walking sticks, but recently I find myself less and less freaked out and more and more intrigued. In fact, this past weekend we found a bat and I got awfully close to get some photos!

  5. Being a parent is hard work. Being a home educating parent is even harder. Being a home educating parent who also teachers her children how to play violin is REALLY hard. I cannot even imagine how busy you are! But what a wonderful opportunity to really impact your kid's lives. Your mantis shots are fabulous and I love the flowers!

    1. It's a good kind of hard and busy - the kind that's worth pushing through!

  6. The look from Syd just cracked me up!!!
    Your flowers are amazing! and I love all your mantis
    Praying really works!!! great idea!!

    1. The hardest part about praying is remembering to do it! I always think about it after the fact...

  7. That tiny mantis is so adorable.

  8. Wonderful flowers and the mantis babies are kind of cute too. Have a great weekend!

  9. Beautiful pictures! Just yesterday was thinking to buy the plant of your second picture, I used to have it, but it died :( I might just go get it after all. Very interesting that you buy the praying mantis sack, we're googleing about it, maybe next year we get one too :) Praying before music and math lesson it the best idea!

    1. I've had that plant for 3 years now, and this was the first year it bloomed.

  10. I love all the color in your garden. I've noticed this summer that we lack color; we have lots and lots of yellow. We will need to work on fixing that. And I still so love that you and your family play the violin. We have a violinist on the worship team at church and I love the Sunday's she plays. One of my favorite instrument! Beautiful pictures. Blessings.