Tuesday, January 28, 2014

More Letters

There's a chance I'm going to have to start a new blog just for Claire's letters...


Dear Mommy,
I hope you have a great day today. Mom, it is a great windy day today, but it is so windy that I might get freezing out there. I know God so much. I love God. And I love you, Mama. I love everything that God made. And I love you how much you do. Lord, oh Lord. Lord my God, You have been good to me so much. So I want to praise You for doing everything in love for me and Averi Kate.


I love you Averi Kate. Oh it's a good day today. Oh. I love this day today. The beautiful wind today. It's a beautiful and happy day today. Oh I love the pictures my mom has on the wall. Averi Kate that is a cute picture of you when you were a baby.


Dear Daddy,
I'm tired today. BUT, it is your birthday! Today is your birthday. Happy birthday, Daddy! I love you, Daddy. Oh Daddy, oh Daddy, oh. Averi Kate loves you. I love you too. Whoa. Daddy, thank you for helping me when I'm almost gonna get hurt. Oh God, oh God. I love learning piano. I would like to go out for your birthday, wherever you want to go. That's true. It's true for me. God, You are my Sun. I'll call You the Sun since You are my Sun. My Sunshine. I hope you like my present I got you.
Dear Daddy,
From Claire

Monday, January 20, 2014

A Note From Claire

A note from Claire to Averi Kate, written during AK's nap, dictated by Claire and recorded verbatim by myself...

Dear Averi Kate,

I hope you had a good day at Dobby's house. From Claire. Averi Kate, did you have a good day at our house? A good day coloring in the craft room? A good day reading books? Are there more gods than one? No, there is only one true God. Did you have a good day at the beach? Playing at the beach? And playing? Yellow is the color of our house. It's a dark yellow. I hope you like turning the lights on and off. God is the King of all.


Sunday, January 12, 2014

My Favorite Quotes of the First 2 Weeks of 2014

Claire: So...God doesn't ever sleep. So...He never goes to bed and He is awake every day and He is not ever tired. I want to be like God. Mommy, I want to be like God. But with legs. And a mouth.

Claire: Averi Kate, can I pretend you're my son Will?

Averi Kate-isms:
  • Cool it up. Example: (holding out the ice pack that had been out of the freezer for a while): Cool it up, Mommy. Cool it up.
  • Good boy. Example: School bus! I see school bus, Mommy! Good boy, school bus. Good boy.
  • Come here. Example: (bending over and patting her legs like she is calling a dog, and using a high pitched voice) Come here, Daddy!
  • Help it. Example: (trying unsuccessfully to open up a box. or to get her socks off.) Help it, Mommy.

Coach (while watching AK standing on the coffee table, saying something unintelligible, then laughing hysterically and jumping off the table onto the couch): She's like a Minion.

Coach: If there ain't one thing I'm not, it ain't a liar.

And a few more quotes from Claire the forty year old:

  • There's a lot of bikes on this road so watch out for bikes.
  • Did you take the trash out? Because the trash truck comes today.
  • Did you drink water today, Mom? Did you take your vitamin?
  • Hey Mom, my sister's going through that raisin box and eating raisins, so, you might want to check the date on that.
  • Man. Man. (What's wrong, Claire?) Something's bad that I did. (What is it?) I only got my snacks and put them in my snack bag. I should have gotten my sister's. (It's okay, I put some extras in there.) Whew. Now I don't have to worry about that.

Monday, January 6, 2014

2013: The Year in Review

Claire in 2013: Well our 3 turned 4 year old has grown up so much. She has a 40 year old soul at times, it seems. Her logic and curiosity and thirst for knowledge astound us. Her ability to read people's emotions is almost eery. With a smile on her face and always a question on her lips, she challenges us and surprises us and stretches us and amazes us every day. She is such a precious gift from God!

Averi Kate in 2013: Who knew what a funny little girl Miss AK would turn out to be? Fun-loving, courageous, marching to the beat of her own drum...With an ever-present grin (except when she is crying, "Hole-nee Mommy!") and some sort of fall/trip/injury every 2 minutes or so, she amazes us and tests us and makes us tired and cracks us up every day. How we cherish this little one!

The Coach and Miss Pickard in 2013: Well we made it through our first home purchase. Enough said. No, really, that was challenging. But I do think we have learned how to communicate better this year and to grow in our faith together more. We celebrated our 7th anniversary and look forward to 146 more.

Blessings in 2013: Probably the biggest blessing for us this year was finding a church home. We are so thankful to the Lord for giving us clear direction on where to join our faith family, and for the first time in quite a while we feel a true sense of purpose in His body. That means more than peanut butter. (Sorry, I was trying to think of the most important thing in life.)

This year and every year, I hope we are found more and more hidden in the shadow of the cross, abiding in Him, making much of Him, and delighting in Him, Jesus Christ, our Rock and our Redeemer.

Happy New Year! (or, really, happy January 6.)

Christmas Part 2 (Merry New Year)

Oh what fun it was to go to Nan and Popple's house on New Year's Eve and Day, to celebrate Christmas with all the Pickard Clan! In Pickard tradition, everyone gathered on Nan and Popple's bed before going in to see what Santa brought...(Santa was apparently working overtime this year!)

Justice wasn't sure.

Entering the living room in order of age, oldest to youngest (another Pickard tradition!)

Once again, Claire missed the big present and went straight for the smallest things.

A real live drumset!

Ball Pit!!!

Claire and Justice in a battle of the drums:

Popple had the girls intrigued with his coffee filter people.

Claire doesn't know what to do with these silly boys.

Back to the coffee filter people.


We all hate saying goodbye.

A manly hug.

Christmas Eve and Day

 Christmas Part 1 took place at Dobby's. On Christmas Eve all of Dobby's side of the family got together to celebrate. Although there were over 30 people there, one one person really mattered to Claire.

Claire could not have been more excited about her cousin Erin coming from Florida. When Erin's family pulled up, Claire looked at me and whispered, "My wish came true!"

After all the fun and chaos was over,  Dobby surprised the girls with one gift to open that night. Christmas PJ's!

Do the pants go on my head?

 Aahhh. That's right.

 In her head, Claire is big enough to carry AK.

So glad to be celebrating my seventh Christmas as this man's wife.

This man, who spent 3 hours assembling a trampoline in the middle of his mom's living room, knowing full well he was going to have to break it down the next day to get it back to our house, all because, he said, "When I was a kid if I got a trampoline for Christmas, I would want to jump on it right away." Kids, you've got an awesome dad.

I had to try it out myself, of course.

Christmas morning...

Not excited at all...

Did I mentioned that the one and only thing that Claire asked Santa for this year was red Christmas lights?

She didn't even notice the trampoline in the middle of the room.

Averi Kate enjoyed opening her presents but once she found raisins in her stocking, it was over. She just sat and ate raisins and asked Pawpaw to open the rest of her presents.

Here she is before the great raisin discovery, reading her new Biscuit the dog book.

And here are some videos of all the fun.

Bless her heart, with the red Christmas lights. Precious.

You can't see too well on this one but the sound of excitement is unmistakeable.

And then Claire realized that Santa had also brought her stocking filled with goodies...