Thursday, December 29, 2011

Learning & Growing...

Between 2 different studies, I have been really learning and growing.  Coincidentally, they are both about the marriage relationship and I have been learning (and re-learning) some great things!  I had to post about it just so I can encourage others to read and/or check out these powerful tools to building great marriages!!!

I've been meeting with a group of friends over the last few months doing a book study about God's instructions to wives that has been completely transforming my life and heart toward the role I have been blessed with.  It's been challenging and has caused me to really search the Bible and learn God's instructions in this regard.  I wouldn't say that I like everything Debi Pearl has to say, but I definitely can see the wisdom she is speaking from.  It has gotten me to examine my heart toward what submission really looks like and why we are called to do it, how God has designed women and men to repsond to Him and to each other, and to understand the needs of my husband and how God has allowed me to be the one to bless him with helping him in this life and for an eternal purpose. 
This is the study that we have been doing with our (big) small group.  We have been doing the DVD's rather than the book, but the book is awesome, too.  Right now with childcare issues and whatnot, the guys meet one week and the girls meet the next.  The design is that we are studying the same material, just on different weeks, so that we can talk about it and work on it together with our spouses at home.  It's not going as quite as smooth as we were hoping with that, but we're still getting a lot out of it.  Like last nights session... it gave some specific instructions to men about what women view as loving and to women about what men view as respecting him.  Obviously, I knew the loving things... but gained lots of great insight about what respect looks like in real life to my husband and how to apply it to our marriage in a more consistent way.

As we go into the new year and setting our new goals for 2012, some of this stuff is definitely going to come into play for me.  I pray that I can be the wife God designed me to be, Brian needs me to be, and that I desire to be!  I'm also still trying to determine my 'one word' for 2012.... wonder if it will be born from these studies?

Friday, December 16, 2011

Whew!!!!

Finally, grades are done and posted, class parties are done, and school is out for a couple weeks.  Now we can think about Christmas--yea!!!!

Here's some pictures from the last month to catch up a little bit...

Ethan turned 3!!!
We got to go to Legoland as a family to celebrate!  Super fun and he loves being a 'big boy'--potty trained and all!

My cousin Danielle got married to my new cousin Darius over Veteran's Day weekend.  We were blessed to be a part of the celebration and loved spending time with my family.

The kiddos enjoying the after wedding brunch and the wonderful weather at Aunt Karen's and Uncle Phil's


I finally got my couch!!!  I've been eyeing this one for about 6 years now... and we are soooooo happy with it!

My cousin Melissa and her adorable boys came up for a visit while her hubby was on a work trip.  LOVED spending time with some of my favorite people.  This isn't t the best picture from the entire weekend, but it's the only one that I have of all of them together.  Love this crew (and the missing one, too!)

Ethan is ready for Christmas--3D glasses and all! :)


I got to help in Zeke's class this week with Christmas parties and Gingerbread House making.  This was Zeke's masterpiece in process.


video
Lastly, but definitely not least, Emmy has started to read!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Thank you SBC Children's Ministries

...for partnering with Brian and I in raising children who know and love God.

Our kids are flourishing in the Awana program and they are excited to know God's word for themselves and put it to memory.  The other night, on his own, Zeke wanted to look up in his Bible the verses he was learning in Sparks.  Because he knew the books of the Bible in order, both Old & New Testament, he was able to find them no problem and was really into reading the verses around the verse itself.  I can't tell you how awesome it was to walk in on that one...



Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Halloween & Trunk or Treat

For the last few years, our church has put on Trunk or Treat, a safe alternative to door-to-door trick or treating.  This is pretty much all my kids know about the practice... and I'm fine to keep it that way for now (though they do love handing out candy to the very few trick-or-treaters we get at our house)!!!  We had a great time collecting candy, seeing friends, winning at the cake walk and playing on the blow-up slides and such!  Thanks SBC!  Here's some pictures of our Halloween fun!

The Miller Kiddos!
Zeke is Cole from Lego Ninjago, which he's been really into lately.  Lots of people thought he was the grim-reaper in his all black costume and axe thing... don't they know I would not help my kids in any way to that end?!?!  Plus, he's way to cute... :)
Ethan is a soccer player (he's been longing to play all season long!).  Thanks to Aunt Karen years ago for sending us this Danish team uniform!!!
Emmy is a pirate.  She was going to be Belle, but the day of decided she wanted to do something different.  She pieced together old outfits that we had from years past and made a pretty scary pirate!!!  After we put on her eye make-up, Brian told her that she looked like a rebellious teenager and Emmy was completely offended!!!  (let's hope it stays that way!)

Emmy & Kylah

Emmy & Ellery

Emmy & Liah

Zeke & Ben

Zeke & Makenna

Veggie Pumpkin for Zeke's class Halloween party!


Monday, October 24, 2011

Apple Time

We've got a great crop of apples off our one producing apple tree this year.  Brian and Zeke harvested them this weekend and got two huge grocery bags full of them!  Then they worked together to make a giant batch of homemade applesauce... delicious!!!  We've been enjoying it every night with dinner for the last 3 days!  Next weekend, apple pie!

Kindergarten Field Trip

Emmy got to go on her first field trip today to Cover's Apple Ranch.  I cancelled my class (my students were so sad, I know) so I could go on the adventure with her.  It was not her first time at Cover's, but it was her first time on a school bus, and she had a great time with her friends!
Here are a couple of fun shots from the day...

Emmy at Cover's

Scenes of Cover's


Our 'Forever' Kitty

Well, after lots of begging and pleading, Brian and I gave in to our little girl's heart's desire to own a kitty of her own.  A cat had her babies right in front of Brian's folk's office, and it worked out that we were able to get one of them home with us over the weekend.  Emmy is beside herself, and the boys are enjoying him, too.  He's still too small (about 7-8 weeks or so) to be outside on his own, but rest assured... that's where he'll land.  For now... meet our little Anakin (aka Ani, or as Ethan likes to call him, our 'skywalker kitty')!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

It's October!

I can't believe we're already in October!  We're enjoying the cooler breeze while the sun is still shining bright and being outside for soccer and all sorts of fun!

Zeke's team hasn't lost a game yet and he's been steadily improving his skills.  He has yet to make a goal, but he's working hard to get it in there!!!

Emmy's team, the Lightning Lizards, won their first game yesterday!!!  Emmy was goalie for the 2nd quarter and she was a total rockstar!!!  She totally dove in and went for it.  I'm not sure, but the final tally of her saves was at least 5 or 6!

This is my co-worker and friend, Courtney, who just had baby Brody last Sat morning!  She has a daughter Emmy's age and a son who is Ethan's age, and the whole fam was out watching her daughter play her game (just before Emmy's).  So fun to catch up with her and see the new baby!  Yea-congrats, Castle family!

I have been enjoying my one-on-one time with Ethan on Tues/Thurs mornings while the other kiddos are in school.  He now gets the brunt of the grocery shopping and all the errands with mommy, but it still is nice to have only him and to give him some good attention.  Last week, he helped me make some yummy muffins and I had to capture his great smile!
This week, Ethan and I dove into potty training with a vengence.  Thursday was our start day... by lunch I had changed about 5 wet undies.  After lunch, he napped and was dry when he woke up and stayed that way for the rest of the day!!!  Now it's Sunday, and there has been only a few accidents since.  He's totally getting the hang of it!  Yea!!!! 

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Soccer!!!!

Today was Emmy's first soccer game--ever!  I am helping coach Emmy's team this year and most of our team hasn't played before so we are starting from scratch.  They are such a cute group of kindergartners and we are having fun with our team but we definitely had our shirts handed to us today by one awesome player on the other team in particular, and Emmy had a great time today, until the last quarter when she was goalie and the other team scored on her.  Poor thing... hopefully next week when she's off goalie rotation will be all good!
Ready to play!

The Green Lightning Lizzards!

Since we had pictures and warm-ups, Brian came just before the game with the boys... this is how they arrived =)

Getting her foot on the ball!
 
Go Emmy!!!

The cutest goalie I've ever seen! =)

So sad... being goalie isn't all it's cracked up to be!  A hard lesson to learn on the first game.


September Rain

Yesterday, we were hit with a short but intense rain spell thanks to the thunderstorms up higher in the Sierras.  Even though the rain only lasted a couple of minutes, these two kiddos wanted their rain coats on and to run out and play in the downpour! It was so cute, but unfortunately by the time they got back out there with their coats on, the rain was pretty much gone...  We had another (bigger) storm pass through today (even soccer got shut down at the end of Zeke's game due to lightning), so they did get their chance to enjoy the warm September rain.


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Cute present!


My very thoughtful Cousin Mel sent some 'back to school' presents to our kiddos.  They loved getting a packaged addressed to them and had fun with the contents.  Especially meaningful is Emmy's gift--handmade hair clips by Mel.  Super cute!!!  Glad to provide the girl in the family that can use her talent--since she only has boys!!! =)  Love you, Mel!!!

First day of School

Monday was a big day in the Miller household!!! 
It was Zeke's first day of 2nd grade (in Mrs. Fox's class), Emmy's first day of kindergarten (she got Mrs. Braga!!!), Ethan's first day of preschool (at Christian Heights), and my first day of Fall classes at Columbia.  Here's a mix of some of the first day pictures (you can click on pics to view them bigger).

New school shoes set out and ready to go!

Our excited to start school kids!!!
 
Ethan got dropped off first!  No crying, barely a kiss for mommy...
he was so excited to play and had such a great day!




Everyone enjoyed their days, and I was exhausted!  Literally, I didn't sit down other than driving from 7:30-2:30pm!!!  I even got blisters from my work shoes and all the running around!!!  Definitely a drastic change from summer!  Special thanks to Grandma April & PaB for the phone call & prayer over the kids in the morning, and to Peggy and Jerry, and our babysitter Alex for being a part of the kiddos special day!