I don’t watch the boys regularly anymore, but, I am their sitter when needed. It is so nice to see our favorite boys and get a day with them now and again (all to ourselves!).

A is old now. He is jabbering and can walk while holding onto hands! AND holding his own bottle – which he is almost done with, ’cause he old.

And how ’bout those strawberry curls???

Rae showed G her toad, “Mr. Green.” He was smitten and continually went over to the window to check on him (by just looking at the tree). When his mom pulled up to take him home, he ran her over to the tree to show Mr. Toad off and make sure to ‘tuck him back in’ to his spot before heading home.

School is out for the summer. I really hope we get to spend plenty of time with them in the next few months! We love them so so so so much and miss them terribly already!!

* Not photographed –  G got to decorate his own little pizza for lunch, they played with bubbles and chalk, watched a movie, painted a wooden car, scooted on the skateboard, and of course enjoyed many a minute on the indoor swing!


February, the calendar’s middle child. The month that is greeted with a sigh and is usually seen as a hurdle that needs to be conquered so we can all just move onto something a bit closer to spring and warmth.

From where we sat, though, this past month was so very nice.

Miss Maybe.

Boy, she would be ohso happy if we just woke up each day and lied on the floor with her until it was time for bed.

The girls celebrated the first Tooth-Doctor Day of 2019! So far, they still enjoy going to the dentist and have no cavities – that could have something to do with the joy.

I wrote a bit about February’s weather back here. Very exciting.

Rae has required several naps and Mae fell asleep on the couch one afternoon. I think they’re going through growth spurts. The tights she is wearing in that photo are at least one size too small. (We bought them one month ago!) I purchased two new jeans for her at the beginning of the month, I hope they prove useful through the spring.

(Hooray for healthy, growing kids and four dollar tights!)

(This day feels like it occurred months ago.)

We were able to borrow the boys for a day here and there. We’ve missed them so much. As soon as they left, we began missing them again.

G instantly asked for popcorn that first morning and quickly began grabbing the stool, pulling the bag of kernels out of the pantry drawer and showed me where to get the pot. Ha! Quite the second breakfast…

Little A had grown SO MUCH in a month and a half! He grew six beautiful teeth, about 78 inches taller, and now has hair! Strawberry hair!

G is talking so well and so much. He’s at that stage where it seems he has nothing left to learn (aside from, like, mathematics). He can help with everything and does. He can hold conversations and soaks up information like a sponge.

We made progress on the girls’ bedrooms!! It will still be a couple of months until their rooms are complete, but it’s exciting!

Helpful lady filling up the furnace. She wore this dress most of February.

I started a painting that involves buffalo, and as a result, Mae has been drawing them as well. This one would like a pizza, please.

Two of our favorite people, Bob and Paula, took us out to lunch after church one day! I didn’t get a photo of our time together, but I did get a photo of the girls from inside the car in front of the restaurant…

I wrote a couple of school-related posts – here and here.

Waiting for their breakfast. Chop chop, Ma!

Zack and I took the girls to a small (free!) petting zoo – put on by the FFA students, who brought in their own animals!

^ Photo by Rae ^

We took the girls to the London Tea room again and to Lolli & Pops (schmancy) candy store.

Mae looks so big! or V looks so little. Either way, the difference surprised me.

We also visited the Hibbelers! for an afternoon/evening. Lynn made us some of the most incredible food (Seriously, so good!!) and the girls got four solid hours with their best friend, V.

Thanks, FEB. Like all middle children, you turned out to be a real joy. You brought an abundance of ice and snow as well as many of the birds out of hiding.

Also! OUR BOY TURNS 31 TOMORROW! He is enjoying his final day as a thirty-year-old at home with us, celebrating a wonderful (but hopefully the last) snow day!



We only had three weeks with them this month and it is our final month with them here at our house.

It went quick.

We tried to fit in a good amount of activities and barely did any formal schooling knowing that our time with them was fleeting.

G helped the girls bake sugar cookies and gingerbread cookies (which we turned into cookie bars because the dough was too crumbly). He also helped us cook every meal and snack. He’s very helpful in the kitchen. I’m sure he’ll be independently cooking oatmeal and eggs before we know it!

At least at our house, he’s not one for toys, but he thoroughly enjoys big people activities including any type of chore and cooking – basically helping around the house in any way. He seems so much like Rae to me, but that is very much a Mae trait.

Baby A slept and grew (in my eyes) so very much!

Isn’t he just the prettiest little sleeper?

G is very interested in sitting on countertops. He helps cook or just watches me cook and does dishes from up there.

In the photo above, “we” were making popcorn, his favorite. He keeps an eye (or four) out for the first POP and then it’s go-time! He repeats the phrase, “Jade, they pop it?” for the entire one to two minutes required for the full batch to pop. Once it’s officially done, he makes sure to alert everyone that the snack is ready.

Quite the helper.


Butalso, he started covering his eyes when he saw the camera out, even if it wasn’t aimed at him. I’m not sure where that came from but, Sweet Little Man, I document all phases of childhood, including your covered eyes phase.

THIS is the G I know! The attention seeker who keeps his hands safely at his side.

I mean, agh. These boys are just so gorgeous.

Mae is his favorite around here. She holds him, she feeds him, and she rolls around on the floor with him. She doesn’t even yelp when he pulls her hair.

I finally restocked our bird feeders over Thanksgiving break, so in December we all stopped frequently to bird watch. Exciting.

Fella! Got! Around! He is crawling now and there’s really no stopping him. (Truly. He crawls over obstacles.)

With the exception of his toys, we tried to keep stuff off of the floor.  That’s a job in itself, letmetellya. We swept and mopped and swept and mopped and swept and…

Tales will be told for generations of the dog fur struggle of 2k18.

On one of A’s many treks across the house, George decided he looked like a friend. He would lie down next to him, and if he crawled too far away, George would get up and move a little closer. Our dog still adores the baby and now George has caught baby fever. I’ve never seen such a gentle little boy!

aaand, here is G with a pet! He was actually photobombing a photo of Maybe. Ha. He’s quick! …until it’s time to put his coat on…

Rae and G were nearly always at odds. But every once in a while I’d see them reading books (She is his favorite teacher), playing with lightsabers, swapping costumes for dress-up, or hiding behind the chair (their favorite game). He bugs her and loves her like a brother and she is going to miss seeing his face every day.

Snuggling with G is like snuggling with a bag of sand. Somehow my bony ribcage pillow doesn’t bother his sweet cheeks (post-nap snuggles are GOLD). He adores hugs, hand holding, and undivided attention. I wish I could’ve given him that direct attention more often.

I was being stretched four (five if you count Maybe) different ways this semester and no one was getting quality Jade time. But, boy, when I found a minute to give some quality minutes, they jolted my heart right on up to FULL real quick.

We’re going to miss our boys (we will see them regularly for field trips and I’ll make sure to bring G a chicken on random afternoons and steal him away for some fun now and again), but I am looking forward to getting back to the homeschool life (and life in general) I dreamed of for my girls and devoting much more of my time to myself (for multiple reasons).

The girls will also no longer participate in gymnastics or dance.

We need to  s l o w  d o w n.

I can’t imagine how the girls are going to handle life without their cousin-brothers underfoot, but I am guessing it will take us all some time to get used to.


Normally November seems like a long month to me, but this year it flew by. I need to go back and see how many months I’ve said that this year…maybe it’s just what getting older feels like.

We stayed very busy – only stopping to slow down when forced,  like on snow days and the holiday weekend.

Busy or not, this month was wonderful!

We began the month celebrating our girls turning six and eight!

Rae turned six this month – there’s a post back here and Mae’s post back here.

We spent plenty of time at doctor appointments, for therapy and regular check-ups. So glad that mad-rush is over!

We had several days of snow – and three snow days / no school for Zack. It was pretty friggin fantastic.

Lady beat me at many a game over the month of November.

Rae wore some fantastic costumes this month. That Santa makes us laugh every time she sneaks up on us wearing it.

We watched It’s a Wonderful Life no less than five times.

Mae’s letter to Santa, a.k.a. “S”

(Notice the P.S.)

Have you seen the Pixar film, Inside Out? Well, Rae made the girl that serves them broccoli pizza out of model magic clay while we worked on their Japan project.

The eight weeks leading up to Thanksgiving (Ha! ..but, I’m not exaggerating…) had been so hectic and we had barely been all together in one place just being. So, we decided to stay home for Thanksgiving this year – and it was perfect.

The girls fill out a thankful journal most mornings as part of our school routine. We read through the entries from this semester as soon as we woke up to get us in a thankful mindset.

For lunch, we had a large meal – which lasted us a week in leftovers. We played all of the Hobbit / LOTR films and watched them as we went about our business, occasionally stopping to snuggle on the couch and watch our favorite scenes.

We also played games, read books, and the girls played outside.

Friday evening (The day after Thanksgiving) our friends, Dennis and Heather came over for supper and games (We saw the new Fantastic Beasts with them the weekend before!). They’re so great!!

The following day, my parents came for a visit. I wrote about our walk with them here.

“Hey, Mom.”

I just put a post up about the boys this month, two days ago, but ya know I can’t help myself. So here are some more photos of them. ‘Cause I like em.

We’ve got big plans to visit one of my all-time favorite people, Ruhi, over Christmas break (I haven’t seen her in fifteen years!) and we will spend Christmas day with the famous, Aunt Sarah!

Before all of that, we’re having our traditional Christmas slumber party weekend with Grandma Shari a week (and a half?) early, so that we don’t miss out on that great time with her.

I don’t like to rush Christmas, but this year, I can’t help but be a little impatient.

But tonight we’re ending the month with homemade sushi. I’m interested to see the result of this experiment…

Happy December, ya’ll.


We didn’t see the boys as often as we normally do, so when we did we tried to have a bit more fun. We let G cook and bake and help around the house more (hand washing dishes is a new favorite for him). He’s still a champ at putting his dishes in the sink, loading and unloading the washer and dryer, and mopping the floor after I sweep. He does everything with joy and is such a bright and happy kid.

A is hitting milestones right and left (more on a few of those below). He slept a bunch and has begun to really master handholding and identifying objects -people, the dog, toys, and ignoring other things – such as he no longer tries to eat the table.

A baby wearing a snowsuit, blowing raspberries, agh! I love that kid.

G met his newest ladies. He is SO! SO! gentle with them despite the excitement that bursts through when he sees them.

A started sitting up for minutes at a time! He also started eating baby rice with the cutest little spoon you ever did see. He really likes it and really wants to help out with the spoon holding – which is not actually all that helpful.

Here is G at one of the many doctor appointments he was dragged to. I’m kidding, he actually enjoys going anywhere and everywhere.  Here he is playing the pretend you’re sleeping game – and what a lovely game that is…

…and here he is playing Look what I shoved behind the fridge!… I don’t like this game nearly as much as the last one, but he sure is proud.

This is the I’m a dog now and I’m going to follow you around smelling the back of your knee for the next eight minutes game.

Also, not a favorite, but it’s better than the last.

…and here he is looking all pretty waiting for his momma outside of the school after one of those doctor appointments.

Mae, guarding her baby while I am taking a photo of them and making him a bottle.

Typically, the second A gets attention, G bombards us with a series of “Look me!” chants or he jumps in front of the camera to photobomb a photo that was intended to be of A. But every once in a blue moon, he sits down to chat with him for a few seconds (his normal attention limit for all things) and every once in a blue-er moon I have the camera in my hand.

We can all just imagine him telling his little brother all about his favorite things in life and that he is filling his head with compliments about how mature his scoot technique has become. That day will come in a year or two, I’m sure. For now, it’s nice just to imagine such a day.

Classic photobomb pose. ^ Tummy, feet up, and hands under his chin.

We also brought the swings back! (We switch out the swings for each boy – G uses our green Ikea swing)

G loves joining in with the girls when they do their daily stretches. Somethings they wait to work on until he is gone – but yesterday, they worked on their handstands and had him join in (They used the wall so that he knew where he shouldn’t stand. He got kicked a lot less). He learned in one day! It took many tries, but he was able to show his mom a perfect stand when she came to pick him up!

Welp. That’s it! Shortest “boys post” to date! You’re welcome, everyone who isn’t their mother.


October is my favorite month. It may have started because it is the month I was born, but as I have aged, the reason has shifted and I now I love it for all of the celebrations it holds and, now that I live up north where fall exists, I am allowed to feel cool air and view the changing leaves making October, officially my favorite.

This month it seemed to go by so fast I couldn’t soak it all in and enjoy all it had to offer. I know I will enjoy looking back on our days as I scroll through this blog in ten years or so, but right now I thoroughly appreciate that it is helping me notice just how full our days, months, and years are.

Every month goes by faster than the next and I am usually left feeling as though we didn’t accomplish anything of worth. Slowly building each post and finding I have more and more to add shows me a different story.

So, let’s get on with the final bit of this month’s story…

We began our month celebrating both of the girls’ birthdays with Zack’s mom  (Rae’s birthday is in November – We will celebrate even more!) – a post all about our many celebrations will be posted at some point in November.

Orange and red and yellow are creeping up here and there. Not cold full-time yet though, so we have yet to start up the fireplace or furnace. Please be cold, November…

Bailey has a new favorite nap spot. In the window box right smack dab in the path of the sun. My kind of lady.

Rae hiding in the bathroom to get away from G. ^ He loves her so much.

^ Those toes! ^

I wrote about our month with the boys back here.

We spent a day in the city as a family – which used to be a common occurrence but sadly isn’t anymore. Autumn is our favorite time and we’re trying to make the most of it. We went to the London Tea Room, the Saint Louis Art Museum, and Ikea – Three of our favorites!

We’ve got a new member of the family. She’s incredible.

Lady lost her third tooth! She wrote the tiniest note to the tooth fairy and set it on my pillow, not hers. She wanted to pretend the tooth fairy was real, but then nixed that idea when she realized she would only get a little bit of money versus a treat (her own pint of dairy-free ice cream). I still kept the note. I love it so much.

Side spiel : The girls decided they would like to pretend Santa is real for the second year in a row. We’ll see how that goes. Their letters to Santa seem to be in a hieroglyphic code which Momma may not be able to decipher…

So much time ( so. much. time. ) was spent in the car. This seems to be our new normal. It’s okay, though. I like our car and it has heat!

Mae started therapy for her feet (she’s fine), so we have spent a couple days a week at the doctor. We still have four or five weeks left to go. Thankfully the kids are all so patient while we wait for her!

For school this month we have been using the fly by the seat of our pants method.

We began a large-scale project on the food chain – producers & consumers. The girls have designed their own food web, complete with labels and a map key. (and not featured on the web – scavengers and decomposers)

We received our second Little Passports country. JAPAN!

Brazil and Japan are the first two?? Those are the countries my parents were born and raised in. It is a smidge creepy that those are the two the folks at Little Passports chose, but also great for us. We have pulled out quite a bit of the Japanese items we own to help us along in our research.

In the first week, they practiced origami, wrote their own haikus (and used fancy ink pens to do so), studied maps and books on their own time, and begun memorizing certain Japanese words and 1-10 (Mae already knew those). Oh, and of course eating Ramen (with ham and boiled eggs) with chopsticks…okay, eating everything with chopsticks…

We plan on making sushi – or at the very least, we will take them somewhere to try it – and watching all of Miyazaki’s movies for the hundredth time. As if we need an excuse.

Now, next month we may not know the country so well, but I think that may make it a bit more interesting (for me). We have studied several countries over the years, but Little Passports has a good way of helping us along and makes it interesting and helps us get creative.

Rae and her animals. Bailey has been really generous with her snuggles on the cold days. On the warm days, Rae hunts frogs.

I turned 31. This is all the proof I have of that day. Mae on day three of wearing that sweater, Rae holding a frog. Mae being a stinker, me paying her back with classic rib-tickles. I’m so glad I get to be their mom and hang out with them full time.

We visited with a turtle for a bit.

A love of tire swings bloomed in Miss Mae. I still don’t trust our trees enough to put one up in our own yard…

More cute notes. The one on the left I received at 10 P.M. one night from a girl who couldn’t sleep. The other one, I found while cleaning out my Bible. (I put it back in my Bible.)

Cute girl being cute.

Here are some more photos of Mae in her favorite sweater – just in case you hadn’t seen enough of it yet…

Mae had costume day at Dance the week before Halloween and we followed it up with a Halloween party at our cousin, Anna’s house!

For their final performance, they went as a normal witch and an eagle (she couldn’t find part of her Dorothy costume.).


…the second attack was not so well received… That is one proud eagle, though.

It was cold and rainy and just how Halloween should be. We went door to door with G and his family as well as up to the school. Zack had a booth at the school’s Trunk or Treat. The Art Club trunk was incredible (not surprised!). He’s brilliant.

NOW! on to more color, colder days by the fire, more birthday celebrations, and a long holiday weekend spent with our favorite man!

We’re ready for you, November!




For our October field trip, we went to Grant’s Farm. G’s mom went with us (and Zack, since teachers had a day off), as well as her sister and my friend, Ven! It was a full house.

The day was, for me, broken up quite a bit – with a doctor appointment for Mae at an early 7 A.M. followed by a two hour drive to the farm and some of our group getting there a bit later than us, some leaving early, and an unexpected lunch outside of the park – all on top of every school in the area being out for the day (busy roads and restaurants). It was quite a day. It was so nice to see everyone there together (even Zack!)

I loved the drizzly, cold weather and the German-style buildings!

The Clydesdales were gorgeous. A couple of them even let us pet them and give ’em a good scratching behind the ears.

They were studying at the map and looked like the cutest little tourists. A sight which quickly dissipated once they saw the camera. Still cute though.

Always collecting. We came home with quite the collection of wet (but colorful!) leaves.

I normally cringe at the thought of making my girls pose, but I couldn’t pass up this gigantic green door without a cheesy mannequin pose.

Thanks, everyone who tagged along and spent their day with us!!

Next month’s field trip will involve only Zack and the girls. They’re going to see a play and go out to lunch!


Things have shifted a bit here in the Rogers’ house this month. The glory that is a new school year has lost its luster. The dream of what it could be is still there but so is the knowledge that our year won’t be all that it could be and the new hard-to-swallow understanding that that is okay.

The month started out with teething babies, a newly jealous two-year-old, school, those extra! curriculars!, new responsibilities and travel and – among other things – simply not enough hours in the day. But after a near meltdown, a long talk with Zack, and a sermon that said just what I needed to hear, I can safely say I’m genuinely fine. Crisis averted.

We’ve begun evening and weekend schooling and tossed out any notion of a regularly scheduled school day. Flexibility. One of the many many things I appreciate about homeschooling.

All of that (internal) drama and still so many great moments were created with our favorite baby boys!

As I mentioned, A is teething – and that means I get to hold him all day long! Y’all know I never tire snuggling.

(He’s not usually in the carrier, but when he is, my hands are free to hold the camera.)

G loves music as much as we do and dancing as much as his momma! …and holding the speaker as close to his ear as possible…

Zack has had a lot of teacher work days this year, which usually means we get to see him for lunch – and my leg gets a break from this terrific game G loves to play.

In true Ozark fashion, October brought us temperatures from the mid-90s all the way to a freezing 30 degrees. I was (am) ready for cold weather but didn’t mind a couple final warm days on the porch with A. He’s so great.

G is just the right hight to touch the lens when I tilt my head to take his photo. It is a very hilarious game that, I’m sure, will be played for months to come.

Leaving the popcorn in the pot means he can use it as a steering wheel while he chews. Another new game that is sure to stick around for a while.

Mae and ‘her baby’ sitting on the couch. She lervs him so much.

The boys got some visits from their family!

Our new school routine meant G and I had nearly an hour of uninterrupted time building play dough turtles. hashtagworthit.

It’s rare, but when G decides to hang out with his brother and attempts a conversation. Oh boy. I bet their momma’s heart fills up real quick at the sight of such a moment!

G ran and put his coat back on (with the hood, of course!) so he could match his buddy.

G asked me to join him in watching something on the television and then rested his hand on mine and then I died.

Hand resting is gateway behavior to hand-holding don’t ya know. While simpler, in this case, it was somehow better. He just wanted to be closer to me. Ugh. These boys.

My girls are going to have such great memories of spending their childhood alongside their cousins. All the reminder I’ll need the next time I feel overwhelmed by duties and quiet, quality moments that turn into demanding flurries.


September flew by!

I’m very glad I decided to post more frequently throughout the month, as I used to. It feels strange to have such a short monthly round-up post!

^ My buddy on dance nights ^

Wrote a post about dance and gymnastics back here.

There haven’t been enough cold days for me to get into the spirit of autumn, but boy am I tryin’! We’ve got a few good steady playlists for fall playing on the regular, “Hobbit cookies” (above) and other such treats are making the rounds and we’ve gone simple with the decorations so far with just some candles, two pumpkins the girls bought for themselves (we’ll use them for our first from-scratch pie), and some dried oranges to hang by the kitchen window. In October, we’ll go full force with the decorating…if it has become permanently cold by then. Please oh please oh please.

Where we have been successful with the fall mindset is with our movie watching! Fall is our favorite season for movies – followed closely by Christmastime – but let’s not get ahead of ourselves…

Our annual favorite is Fly Away Home. This year added Rudy to our line-up – Zack and I hadn’t seen it since we were kids – we ate this ham and bean soup with homemade bread for the occasion. Oh boy. So good. Some other favorites are You’ve Got Mail, Wallace and Gromit and the Warerabbit, E.T., Harry Potter series, and The Hobbit trilogy – which pairs nicely with those “Hobbit cookies” and more soup.

I had poison ivy and a cold for the first half of the month. I finally caved after a week and a half of torture and went to the doctor for some good stuff (for the poison ivy). The girls were such troopers. I’m not surprised, just happy about it.

Katie has officially grown on us. By that I mean, we have officially grown on her.

She particularly adores G. She actually curled up on his lap and purred loudly as she fell asleep. I didn’t think she was that type of cat!

We only took one trip to the river in September. It was the perfect night for it!

^ Mae’s Black Panther.

We went to the St. Louis Scottish Games.

After more than a month, we finally made it over to our neighbor’s house! It’s weird to go so long without a visit. She has brought us vegetables and other goodies over to us, but taking time to sit and chat about life with them is so nice! All of the kids adore her and she, them. What a blessing good neighbors can be.

There is also our school round-up, here. Our month with the boys, here.



It has been so fun having the boys around this semester! Occasionally trying sometimes as I try and juggle the needs and desires of four children, but I couldn’t ask for better kids to have around.

G is eversograteful anytime we’re able to go outside. His favorites right now are riding in the wagon, chasing cats, checking on his ladybirds and collecting their eggs, swinging (yes please!), riding his bike in the yard and playing with the water gun.

He is obsessed with the cats. He is always just as excited about his fifteenth daily sighting as he is at his first upon his arrival in the morning. He’s becoming so much sweeter and tamer around them, they often gravitate towards him now.

G is never far from Rae. She’s mostly okay with this. Haha.

^ photos of A sitting up were taken by Rae ^

We made pretty regular trips to the library this month. It’s always a little daunting taking four kids anywhere solo, but we tend to go when we’re the only ones there. That helps.

We’ve got plans to see these boys outside of our home tonight at a town movie night and tomorrow at their grandma’s house. I’m so glad they never seem sick of me or react as one does when they see a teacher in public.