Sunday, November 27, 2011

Black Friday Fun

Nana + Grandaddy joined us later on Thursday evening and we enjoyed the Thanksgiving leftovers together.  Friday the women spent time with the kids + indoor projects inside while the boys were hard at work on outdoor projects.

Working men. Hard at work on Black Friday.

Friday, November 25, 2011


This year's holidays are very different as we aren't traveling to see family.  Normally we spend Thanksgiving with my family in central Florida, but this year we invited Jasons' family to spend Thanksgiving with us in the panhandle.  Melissa and I spent Wednesday cooking side dishes to contribute to a big Thanksgiving meal at church we shared with church family and people in the community. 

We got to meet Mrs. Madge, a remarkable woman who joined our church in 1946.  Two sundays after visiting the church she joined the choir, she played piano for church for 31 years, and still works on a project every day in the nursing home.  So inspiring.  We also hung out with Randy (home from college), and the sweet deaf couple at our church Ken + Anne.  Ivory comes up to me, "Can I go talk to Mrs. Anne?"  Then she went and signed to her and Mr. Ken every sign she coudl think of.  So cute.

We met new friends from the community who joined us with their families or they came alone.  I'm so glad they had a place to come so they wouldn't have to spend the day alone without food.

The team of people who organized and served the dinner are such sweet, hard working servants.
Cutest turkey ever.

Mommy love. Micah + Uncle Matt

Micah + Aunt Mel Ivory + Anne + Korban

Micah + MikeMike

Serving line   Papa + Korban  -  Cassie + Ivory 
Lots of food and laughter.
Some of the sign team shared a few worship songs with us. 
Mariah (2nd from the left) shared a sweet testimony of thanksgiving for her salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.
Ivory watching the sign team with her binoculars.

Stephen shared his testimony of thanksgiving, his main point being his gratefulness for salvation in Jesus Christ.  Brother Mike shared a word of encouragement and gave an invitation and prayer.
Micah Man was a little antsy during all this talking so we walked the back wall and played a little game of chase.
My sweet boy.  He has had so many clumsy accidents lately!  Poor baby.  He seems to fall several times a day every day.  At the Thanksgiving meal he tripped and fell under the table hitting the side of his face on the leg of the table as he went down.  So pitiful!  It's amazing he doesn't have a black eye. 

Last week he fell down a few steps, a few minutes later split his thumb open on the back porch door as it swung shut, then gets attacked by a duck at the park that flew through the air, bit through 3 layers of clothing and knocked him to the ground.  All within an hours time.  My poor little boy!  He's a champ.  One of those days you're tempted to find a life size safety bubble.

Check out his hand.  He figured out how to slip his hand in his pocket and was walking back and forth like a little man.  So cute.

We sent people home with cookies and the sweet plan of salvation in a tract.
The dishwashing that followed was the biggest mound of dishes + food to clean up I've ever encountered on Thanksgiving.  It was worth every bit of work and we had an excellent clean up crew. 

I'm grateful for the faith the pilgrims demonsrated in exploring a new land in search of religious freedom so we could spend the day praising and thanking God in celebration with our church family.

Love Squeeze

Brother-sister love squeeze.

Love how much they love each other.  They're love and excitement is hard to damper with discipline when they play together instead of falling asleep--our recent struggle.  We switched bedrooms and moved Micah into a big boy bed next to sister.  They've never slept in the same room before so playing together rather then falling asleep together is more what's happening then anything.  We heard them at 5:30AM one morning (they normally wake at 7 and the night before they didn't fall asleep until 10:30pm...2.5 hours after bedtime).  Micah had climbed up on sister's bed and was waking her up and playing with her.  Today, at nap time Ivory was calling for me.  Nana walked in to find Micah sitting next to her head patting her back to wake her up.  So cute.  So mischevious.  Well, Micah has finally fallen asleep so time to put Ivory to bed--the best technique for sleep (at night at least) for now.  We'll keep working on this!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Play Date + Art + Sunday Best

Life has been hectic, crazy, and exhuasting.  Korban is snuggly...very snuggly.  As in he wants to snuggle lots and lots and lots.  He enjoys being held...pretty much always.  If he's awake he's probably fussing...or soon will be.  Thank goodness he sleeps in his little moses basket well or I think our sanity would be questionable by now.  The kids still adore him and we love him dearly.  He's now 10lbs and 23inches.  He is our special blessing. 

One day last week we went for a fun play date at Addie's house that included face crayons, cuddles, toys, and cinnamon rolls.
Ivory's recent artwork: dinosaur.

Dressed in their Sunday best.  Micah was thrilled about having his picture taken...

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Family Portraits

To say my sister is talented is an understatement.

Check out these amazing photos she took of our family.


Friday, November 11, 2011

Newborn Portraits

So, when my sister called a few weeks back to let me know she'd be coming down to Florida to meet our newest addition and would be taking pictures of him I may or may not have been sobbing.  Ivory, "Mom are you okay?  Mom, why are you crying?  Mom, are those tears?"  Apparently it's difficult for a three-year-old to understand tears of joy. 

While I would have been ecstatic to simply SEE Debi, it was an extra bonus to benefit from her incredible camera skills.

to see some of the gorgeous shots she captured of our precious little Korban.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Everyday Happenings

Princess Ivory + Dino Micah.  Ivory loves dressing like a princess + going to the palace with daddy where they dance.  Micah loves scaring us with his dinosaur. 

At night we give him his elephant and yellow blankie.  He smiles and says, "Uff, uff!"  "You want your doggie?"  Big smile + giggle upon receiving said dog.  Micah smiles and says, "oo-oo-aaa-aaa?"  "You want your monkey?"  Big smile + giggle upon receiving red monkey.  Micah smiles and says, "Rowr!"  "You want your dinosaur?"  Big smile + giggle upon receiving blue dinosaur.  Then, he hugs them all tightly and tries laying down...on top of many stuffed animals he's practically sitting up...but oh so happy.  Adorable.
Today we went for a family walk where we enjoyed the brisk Autumn air.

Classic Florida: sweatshirt + shorts.

Korban loves being on his momma.  I put him in this carrier and he promptly konks out.  Don't mind the peanut butter crackers in my hand...I'm only a starving nursing mom.  Seriously, I feel ravenous 90% of the day.  So far I've only snuck a few middle of the night snacks, though.

The kids were SUPER whiny this morning.  The walk was a refreshing break from the whining...until we got home.  After a short stint of porch play time + tantrums (mostly tantrums) they both went inside for time outs.  Mainly just for their parents sanity.  The time outs worked wonders and they both came to lunch with fresh outlooks, and their parents with renewed sanity. 

Wild berries we found on our walk. 
Whispers of Christmas.  We are getting excited about Christmas--and so is Ivory.  She said she's excited about the presents and getting a Christmas tree.  Me too, Ivory!  But, Thanksgiving first.  It will be a very different holiday season for the Bennett family, but a good one that we're excited about!

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Friday night we had another bonfire night with a few teenagers.  The kids loved playing ball and hide 'n seek as well as eating hot dogs + s'mores.

The kids were too busy playing to pose for pictures...hence the blurs. 
We had a great time!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Life with Five

I planned originally to label this post "Life with Three"...but then realized that in perspective our children are only 3/5 of our family.  There are five with us.  All five us take time and energy and contribute highly to the make-up and workload of our family. 

FIVE.  In perspective that way, our house seems that much fuller.  I never anticiated that I'd be in a family of five at the age of 26.  But, as a I sit with Korban resting (finally not fussing) on my chest wide-eyed, listening to Ivory read the weather book on our futon and hear Micah kicking in his crib while we wait for Jason to come home from settling youth stuff I feel so content.  Life is full, crazy, wild, and at times highly discouraging, but God is so good.  His constant faithfulness, grace, and love is never failing.

Yesterday was my first go at mothering all three of my children on my own.  I was extremely apprehensive as the day approached.  The day passed, though, with minimal meltdowns, tantrums, and crying.  In fact, I actually enjoyed the day with my children + evening with my husband.  Jason was even brave enough to take ALL THREE children outside after work so I could enjoy some quite while cooking dinner.  He also took on Korban when he was fussing and unsettled in the middle of the night so I could sleep.  I told him I'd get up with him in a minute and take him in the living room so he could sleep and he said no he would.  "But, honey, you have to work in the morning!"  His reply?  "We both work.  You sleep."  Yes, I know he's amazing. 

Today I woke up tired.  In fact, while the kids were watching their morning show, and when I finally got Korban settled and asleep on my chest, I may have dozed in and out while Ivory begs, "Mommy, please don't sleep.  Please wake up."  I was nervous about having a short fuse and lacking energy to handle today.  But this morning went so well.  Then, I got a text from my friend, Sarah, asking how I'm doing and telling me she's been praying for me a lot this morning.  That's why.  Praise God for the prayers of his people.  I sure can feel them.

Re-enstating blanket time went relatively well...all things considered.  Micah only wandered off for a little while rummaging through dresser drawers, Korban only cried some of the time, and Ivory only had one meltdown.  Successful?  Sure. The kids enjoy playing on their little mats while we read our daily Bible story + practice our memory verse for the week.  This morning Micah even tried doing the motions with us--love it. Korban chilled on Mom's lap during Bible story time.
Two days in a row ALL THREE have slept at the same time during nap time.  Miraculous, yes.  Today I took advantage of that and slept with them for about an hour...until loud knocking at the door woke Ivory to shout, "Mom, the knocking woke me up!!" in a very distressed voice.  Thank you, Ivory.  But, I'm not complaining about my hour nap--heavenly.   I'll enjoy this napping overlap while it lasts!
And had to share this priceless photo of my two kiddos post-church.  Micah loves going to class like a big boy (so grateful for great preschool teachers willing to welcome Micah into their class so young!)...but doesn't just love wearing the crown he made and posing for a picture.  They learned about Queen Esther tonight, hence, the crowns.