It Can't Be.....But It Is! :'-(

Today is my baby's FIRST birthday! Has it really been a WHOLE year since she was born?! It makes me sad to think that this year (not unlike all of the others) has gone in a blink of an eye. I want to hold on to the baby but am enjoying the little girl she is becoming. She has the cutest grin with a wrinkle in her nose that I've ever seen. She also has about the loudest scream I've ever heard.....seriously! We are currently working on that though. She truly is the infamous "little girl with the curl in the middle of her forehead".....Because when she is good, she is really good, but when she is bad...she is horrid! I love her to pieces!!! She is a climber, she loves her sisters and her brothers, she is a Daddy's girl, she loves her Mama, and she is a major hugger! It's so cute and sweet when she wraps her tiny arms around your neck and squeezes. It melts my heart. Her eyes hold an orneriness that none can compare with. There is spunk in her spirit that I pray will one day be directed in a Christ honoring way.

Our beautiful birthday girl!
I am thankful for our little Selah Joy Houston. She has been that blessed reminder from our Heavenly Father that we are to "pause & reflect, and rest in the Joy of the Lord which is our strength" in every event of our lives. If I remember nothing else from the past year, may I remember this. Selah, like all of the others, is truly a gift from God! I look forward to watching her as she grows, her first steps, first words, her discoveries of the world around her, the first time she reads, her first lost tooth, all the milestones that I know will come all too soon, but for now I am content to sit back and hold her in my arms all nestled in holding on to my "baby" just a little longer.

Not really in the mood for photos

A fun spirited girl

Selah loves her Daddy!

Lovin' her Sammy time!


A little twinkle in the eye
Blessed Mommy and Daddy!

Precious Baby girl


Our first family picture

At the hospital all bundled up

Sleep my baby
Happy 1st birthday Selah!!!!! I love you and am blessed to be your Mama!

Some Time Off....

Having dinner together with our new chairs!
We are having a great time as a family taking a bit of time "off".  We have enjoyed reading, puzzles, games, videos, the fair/rodeo, fellowship, and just plain vegging! It has been refreshing after much busyness. School will be starting again on the 4th. I'm a bit excited and a little nervous about the upcoming year. Nervous? you might ask, well, yes I always wonder if I'm giving my children the education they need. It is a heavy burden as you think on the fact that the very future of 11 souls is laid on your shoulders. I'm so thankful for a husband who takes an active role in their lives and who encourages me when I need encouraging (everyday!) ;-).  This may sound a bit crazy, but I love the smell of new crayons, and the gathering of fresh supplies! And I am looking forward to a scheduled week again. Life, a bit on the normal side once more. Hey- one can hope, right? ;-) For now, I'm just going to enjoy the one more week of family time we have before our adventure of another school year begins! One more week of lazy days, listening to the cheerful laughter of children playing, the more "grown up" sound of teenagers conversing, the beautiful sound of my girls' singing, the joyful gurgling of the baby as she practices "talking".  I'm going to enjoy one more week of our "summer vacation". I pray you all have a blessed day today!

Who Has My Phone?.......

Do you ever wonder who had your phone last? The best way for me to know which hands last touched my phone, I just look at the photos! It's always amusing to see what is on my phone! And, yes, sometimes I even get in on it! Such a temptation!

Family Camp 2012

The view from our cabin

Family devotions

Jungle Jim teaching the children

Horse back much fun

A little nervous about now!

Selah, the baby we were waiting for last year, with a stick in her mouth

Mom?! Is that you? (asked by Naomi, who was taking the picture)

Anna finishing the zip line

Julia on the zip line

Outdoor service

The Ragsdales did an amazing job with the children!

Samuel after FINISHING the ropes course!!!

Friends <3 td="td">

The Houstons, Postmas, and Blumes
Our ever growing family picture in front of our cabin
Last year, family camp was a bit interesting......I was 41 weeks pregnant with our 11th child! It was fun to be there and I was able to rest while everyone else did the fun stuff. This year, it was a different story! I actually got to do all the events I wanted!!! Soooo, I went horse back riding, the superman swing, the zip line, and archery. It was a bunch of fun! We had the privilege of having Jim and Mary Blume (our beloved missionaries to Papua New Guinea) as well as our dear friends, the Postma family come. Pastor Postma and "Jungle Jim" were our speakers for the week. What great challenges given for our families to grow in! As always, the fellowship was sweet and the scenery was amazing! Family camp is always a highlight of every summer.