Wednesday, August 28, 2013


We were able to collect 3 full 5-gallon buckets of apples off of our one apple tree this year!  Due to the Rim Fire, we were afforded some days off of school, so we took advantage of the time to learn how to can applesauce!  We made applesauce last year and then froze it, but we got quite a few more apples this year and figure if we can it, it will last longer and if we can bear to part with the deliciousness, we can actually share it as well.  So, here's to getting domestic!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

1st Day of School 2013-2014

First day of school today went very well in the Miller household!
What a good looking bunch of kids!!!

(the pictures are somewhat muted in color because there is a big fire going on in our county right now and the morning air was terrible today.  I'm surprised you can't see the ash particles that were floating everywhere in the picture.  I don't want to edit the lighting in the photos because I want to reflect what was happening in the moment!  The kids couldn't even have 1st recess or play outside at preschool today because the air quality was so bad!)

Sunday, June 23, 2013

2013 End of Year Teacher Gifts

Ms. Kitchen was Emmy's awesome 1st grade teacher and we pulled off a class gift that was super special just for her. 
The 'group gift' ended up being a creative effort--a wood crate (from Joanne's) that I painted white and used paint pens to write the main quotes (found through Google).  Then using Ed Emberley's Fingerprint Book (click here to find on amazon) for ideas, I had each of the kids use their fingerprints to create garden type animals on the box, and used a black paint pen to write their name next to their creation. Parents donated gifts, school supplies, gift cards and fun personal handmade creations to the box to make for a super cool present.  Another parent and I also took pictures of each student, and I created a photo banner as a classroom decoration for her.  I used some great red burlap I had (Joanne's at Christmas time), twine, and my sewing machine to create the banner, and then stapled the kids pictures and names onto the burlap.
I think they turned out pretty cute, if I don't say so myself!
Our kids loved Ms. Kitchen and we all loved blessing her!

Zeke's teacher's gift is in another post... directly from Shutterfly. :)

More Teacher Gifts

Click here to view this photo book larger

This is a link to Mrs. Gustafson's memory book, her gift from the class, along w/ a $200 gift card to REI. The book turned out awesome, even though it was a day late, which was a total bummer! After teaching for 23 years, I felt it was a HUGE compliment and honor when she said it was the nicest, most meaningful end of year gift she has ever received! Mrs. Gustafson is an amazing teacher and I was go happy to be a part of making her feel the love that our students and parents have for her!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Fun at Cover's Apple Ranch

With our beautiful weather, the day off, and Brian out of town for his World Cup of Beer Competion Results, the kids and I busted out of the house and headed up to Cover's for some outside fun.  A couple of friends were able to meet us up there, so it was a great couple of hours, complete with friends, picnic lunch, train ride, apple juice and cookies!
Emmy with Erilynn and Kierstiana

Train Ride!

Big kids still like trains!  Zeke with his friends Adam and Logan.

Ethan in 7th heaven on a train! :)

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Nieces are here!!!

My baby twin nieces!  Born in the wee hours of March 2, I was so honored and blessed to be able to spend some time with my brother and my sis-in-law and their new babies this weekend!  Rebekah is on the right and Grethe is on the left... LOVE them and I'm so attached already!

Grethe Miriam on her first day in the world! She weighed 5 lbs, 9 oz and was 19.5 inches long at birth.  She was baby B in utero, and was known as the 'dancer.'  She was born at 1:08am about 20 minutes after her 'older' sister.

Mark and Rachel are already an awesome parenting team! 

Rebekah Edith on day 1.  Her birth stats were 5 lbs, 1 oz and 18 inches long.  She was born first at 12:48am, but is the 'little' sister :)

A very blessed Auntie,

Monday, January 28, 2013

2013 Goals

The annual tradition of 'GOALS' instead of resolutions continues for 2013 in the Miller household.  We did pretty good at meeting most of our 2012 family goals, kids goals and Brian's goals.  A review of my own was pretty disappointing... but with some introspection, time in prayer and some good talks with Brian, I've realized that it is probably because I'm spread too thin and expect to be super-mom/wife/woman/worker/teacher/counselor/cleaner/server, and all the other hats that come with the territory.  Something has got to give, and it's usually myself.  We're going to do a bit better this year, and thus, my personal goals will remain pretty much the same so that I can actually accomplish them... because they are really important to me, however mundane or 'normal' they seem.

2013 Family Goals:
  • All Miller Family Trip (we had such a great Disney Trip, we'd love to hang out all together again!)
  • Legoland Trip (we have 3 free kids tickets earned from summer reading program at the library!)
  • Service projects as a family
  • Keep up on Bible Reading with kids
  • Couple's get-away--keep our marriage good!
  • Continue Awana for kids, and serving there
  • Re-establish jewel jars for chores and family cleaning
  • Kids savings 10%... build in systems & places for giving, saving, and blow money
  • Us savings 10%, giving 10%, build up emergency fund
  • Refinance house
  • Family recreation at least 1 time a month--Yosemite, bikes, hiking, etc.
  • 1 day pass is open, drive over
  • Zeke to Hume?
  • Take kids fishing
  • 1 flower bed revamp
  • Small group camping trip
  • Christmas party
  • Playdates for kids (at our home)
  • Get house buttoned up for future opportunities
We have some set for each kid and each of us, but I only will blog my own:
  • Exercise at least 3x per week
  • Goal weight by summer
  • Curtains in dining room, kitchen and Emmy's room
  • Quiet time at least 3x per week
  • Prioritize
  • On top of organization of paperwork, savings, documents, taxes
  • Support Rachel & Mark with baby girls
  • Be intentional about: -hobbies (finish Ethan's baby book) -time with friends -supporting Brian in efforts for invention and his hobbies -time with my kids
  • 'Finish' decorating and house organization in each room
So, there you have it... family and personal goals for 2013!  Here we go!!!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Christmas Time (in pictures)

Mark & Rachel visit with the babies in utero! We all took turns feeling 'Baby B' moving and shaking and had fun maternity clothes shopping with Rachel at Ross, buying twinsie baby clothes and having a little early holiday celebration with them!
Getting ready for Santa!

Christmas Day celebration! 
Presents galore and fun family time.  Dinner was delicious and my student, now our friend, Al Baldwin joined in it with us.

Snow Fun for New Year's Eve!

Our first snow adventure of the season was with the Otterson's, the Crawford's and 3/4th's of the Pfeiffer's on New Year's Eve Day.  Tons of snow up at Little Sweeden, and the kids lasted for a good hour, then a rough 1/2 hour before we were done.  Got some great pictures of all the activity!  My favorite one of the day was the one below of Luke!
Cute kid faces!