Life Update

Well, I originally started this post with some poetic jabber about how October had dashed away in her colorful splendor, and November slid quietly in again, dressed in her usual drab brownish-gray… But now it’s almost a month later and we’re not going to talk about December’s clothes, so here goes another life update, brought to you by some type of flu that has had me firmly planted on the couch.

I realized I’ve only posted twice since I posted last November, announcing the birth of our darling Elizabeth. Guess it’s time for an update, as she’s now a year old!

We don’t know where that year went, but, living up to her middle name, Elizabeth continues to be a true Joy. Her bright smiles and her chatter have become such a part of our daily life, and now we don’t know how we ever lived without her.

She is starting to say some words, and her siblings are so delighted when they hear her say “hey mama” or “num-num” or “choc” which is her way of begging for chocolate. She says “joosh” when she is thirsty, and “no-no” when she’s doing something she knows she shouldn’t, and “stop!” if she sees her Papa give me a hug. 😂 Every large bird she sees is a “tuhkey” and every small animal is a “catty-catty-cat.”

She “can’t walk,” but she jumps on our bed, so I’m thinking we’ll soon have another set of tiny footsteps running through the house. 🙂

She’s a perfectly ordinary little girl, completely human and descended from Adam like the rest of us; but she is The Baby, and that makes her a celebrity in this house. We all just adore her.

Ruth, next up from the baby, turned 3 in September. She is still telling everyone, “I just had a birthday! I’m alweady thwee!” She is just so much sunshine.

Ruth has big feelings. She’s either VERY happy, or VERY sad. And either way, she’s hilarious. We can not keep from laughing at her made-up songs, her prayers, her conversations… her personality is just too funny.

I foresee a lot of friends and fun in her future.

Oliver is all farm boy; not one bit afraid of getting dirty. I’m kept busy washing mud and grime off of his clothes and shoes. He loves nothing more than riding with Cory in the litter truck or on the tractor.

If you come to my house and find gravels all over the front porch, and muddy handprints on the front door, you may thank Oliver;)

He’s not always muddy 🙂

He’s affectionate and impulsive. Always bringing a flower or a “cute rock” and handing it to me with an “I love you Mom!” He was sick before me, and this morning he gave me a hug and said “Mom I know how painful it is to be so sick, and I’m so sorry for you.” 🥺

He is is a normal boy, loves to tease and pester the girls, but he is so gentle and kind to Elizabeth! She loves him too. He is doing kindergarten in our homeschool, and seems to really enjoy it.

Anna Grace is in 2nd grade. She’s my big helper. The others help out too, but it seems her attention span lasts a little longer. She likes to wash dishes, loves to be put in charge of making lunch, and her Very Favorite Grownup Job is helping me skim cream off the milk to make butter.

She’s a devoted big sister. ❤️

In school she loves history. Particularly Civil War history. We recently took her on a history field trip, and she just loved it!

My mom joined us for the field trip. Such a fun day.

(She loves art too, but her very un-artistic mother hasn’t done so well at teaching art. We’ll get there.)

As for myself and Mr. Dexter, we have no trouble staying busy these days, but it’s a “happy busy,” the kind where we know it won’t always be this crazy, and one day we’ll look back and miss these times.

Cory has been running a division of his Dad’s well pump repair business, and he absolutely loves it. It’s so fun to see him be so rewarded by his work. He says people are always happy to see the guy who is coming to get their water going. 🙂 One down side is that wells don’t observe holidays and weekends, they just malfunction whenever they want. But that’s just life, and we’re grateful for this opportunity.

We bought some milk cows in August, so we’ve been enjoying having all the butter and cheese and cream we could possibly want. It comes at the price of a tighter schedule, though, so think carefully before you go buy a cow. 🙂 We intended only having 1 cow, but somehow we now have 6 cows, and a small herd share business. That’s been enjoyable.

I think they’re pretty.

We do occasionally take time for fun 🙂 Each year we so look forward to our annual camping trips. One with my family and one with friends. My family went to a new campground this year. It was beautiful and we had such a good time!

Oliver caught this bass but was too tender-
hearted to keep it, so we threw it back in.
We tried containing Elizabeth
in a box.

We went cherry picking with my sister and her children this summer, and grape picking this fall. So much fun to work together as a family and lay up food for the winter.

We picked the grapes at Wenger’s in Stuarts Draft. It was a perfectly beautiful evening.

Cory and I celebrated our 10th anniversary this past summer. We have a photo shoot scheduled to document that, but it hasn’t happened yet. Maybe I can share them here when they’re done.

Last month we went on our fall camping trip with our friends. We’ve been camping with them for years, and we always have so much fun.

The children played especially well together this year with very little need for parental mediation. I guess they’re growing up 🙂
Two little s’more eating pals

This holiday season, I’ve appreciated especially dearly, the blessing of family. We lost Cory’s Aunt Ruth Anne back in May, and her presence was deeply missed at our Thanksgiving dinner. We also lost my Uncle Dwight, and we miss him too. ❤️ I really want to be more intentional in loving the people in my life, and loving them well. We don’t know when the time will come that we don’t have them anymore.

We recently had special visitors from Hatteras, Cory’s aunt Kellie, (center) and her husband Al.
We hosted some of Cory’s family for Thanksgiving. It was a special evening.

We had a lovely thanksgiving meal with my family, and I had such a great time I forgot to take many pictures. The pictures I did get aren’t very flattering, and I like my family, so I will spare them:)

We’ve had the blessing of getting to stay with my last living grandparent, one night a month, for a while now. Granddaddy turned 97 in June! He survived the big C, and is still able to get around pretty well. He loves to see the children, and they love him, so we have been taking 1 of them along each time. It makes for some special memories.

The view from Granddaddy’s driveway.

Well I’d better go, I’m starting to feel better and there are dishes to wash and cows to milk and laundry to fold, and more dishes to wash. 🙂 y’all have a good week and take care!

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