Wednesday, April 30, 2008

thank you, kathy!

we have had a wonderful last few days as kathy came to stay with us and help out while i was working. it was so nice to have her here and it was sad to see her go this morning. we especially appreciate her help as she has just started a new job and after she went through a ton of obstacles in getting here last saturday!! (seriously, it was one mini-crisis after another on her way down!) so, thank you so very very much for coming! we love you!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


Earth Day Graphics
happy earth day!
this year we have decided to challenge ourselves as a family to make a few changes in hopes of positively impacting the earth. we are going to commit to:

1) getting enough reusable bags so that we do not have to use any paper or plastic bags when we shop. we currently have enough for about half of our groceries, but we need a few more to be able to do this.
2) courtney is going to bike to work for the summer because she won't have to drive lily to our childcare provider's house as she is coming to us.
3) we are going to try to use almost all compact fluorescent lights in our home. (they last 10 times longer than standard lightbulbs!)
4) we are going to phase out all of our chemical cleaners and use only natural products to clean our home.

we mention all of this not to pat ourselves on the back, but to let it be known to people so we actually have to hold ourselves accountable. even though they are small changes, we do think they can positively impact the environment and our lives.

so, we would love to challenge you to think about making a small change in your life this year. (whit, this one's for you as we know you love a good challenge!) some other ideas we have tried our are considering include:

- recycling if you are not yet doing that (75% of the trash most americans throw away can be recycled!)
- stop buying disposable water bottles and using a reusable bottle from home.
- donating things that you no longer need (to good will or on craig's list or something) as opposed to throwing it out
- starting a compost (on our list to try again... as our last one was not much of a success!)
- buy produce locally or join a community supported agriculture group.
- turning your refrigerator temperature down a degree or two, turning you furnace heat down a degree or two, turning your AC temperature up a degree or two.
- running the dishwasher only when it is full.
and the great thing is that most of these things are money savers, too!

anyway, we all know tons of ways we can be more "environmentally friendly" but it often seems like too much of a hassle. so, we are just encouraging you to take one small step on this earth day and see if you can stick with it!

let us know what you think!

and as the lorax said, "the trees have no tongues...unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. it's not." - dr. seuss

happy earth day!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

a wonderful visit!

growing up, my friend sarah and i spent every waking moment together as often as we could. our mothers were so gracious and pretty much adopted each of us into their homes. our friendship has been so precious and has truly molded me into the person i am today. having lifelong friends is one of the greatest gifts! sarah and i are separated by a bit of water now, as she is in germany and i miss her so much. this past weekend, sarah's mom, marianne (who i still have a hard time not calling "mrs. mcgriff"), made the most generous trip to virginia to visit us and spend time with lily. we had an awesome time relaxing and enjoying the beautiful weather. she showered us in generosity and love and it was a wonderful visit!!!

(a picture of sarah and i from before lily was born!)

Monday, April 14, 2008

isle of palms

we just got back from Isle of Palms, SC after spending a week at the beach with family and friends! we had a blast riding bikes on the beach, swimming and just relaxing. our good friends, the Hammocks, were gracious enough to stop by and bring Ava along for the fun. we hope you enjoy some of the photos below!

ready for lily and ava's first hardcore ride!

enjoying the beach!

note the bubble on top of her head! she LOVED this!

and, as brandon so profoundly put it in the guest book, "staying here has taken us back to our days along the wabash river. when we used to sail down the river in our makeshift boat with a bedsheet for a sail." oh the good ol' days. so hard to leave!