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The story of our precious little girl's 17 months of life with Trisomy 18 (July 4, 2010 - December 15, 2011) and of us, re-learning to live "after Lilly."
"I will praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made ...." Psalm 139:14

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Peep! A Taste of Freedom & Lilly's lily garden

Yesterday was a nice sunny day and warm enough for the chicks to go outside for the first time.  Frank and Tabby cleaned out the chicks homes while the chicks explored.  We currently have them in two tall boxes because they got too big for their swimming pool home.

At first they stood baffled in two groups.  They must have thought they had to maintain the segregation that had experienced in the two different boxes after being separated a few days ago!

Finally their tiny chick brains remembered that they were not foes, but friends:

"So how's it been guys and gals?"

The dogs wanted to meet the new biddies so bad!  Not yet girls ...

Cleaning out the feeders:

Awwww ... the chick is so cute!

Meeting at the water cooler!

Solomon is slightly amused:

The biddies were all tired out after several hours of getting to scratch and peck outside.  Here they are back in their clean temporary homes:

On a different note, my little garden in memory of Lilly is doing pretty well.  Tabby had dug up the bulbs in her garden we had at our old house.  I replanted them, along with a bunch of new lily bulbs.  Things are growing:

I haven't tucked her decorations back in yet.  I thought I ought to wait to see where the lilies appeared so I didn't accidentally cover any up.

Solomon wore this outfit to church today - it is smocked with owls.

Hunter made me laugh - he said he loved Solomon to wear clothes like this because the white part of the smocking made him think of air filters in cars.  LOL!  He's right.  I made this one extra large, trying to show the white part of the smocking for those of you that don't pay attention to this sort of thing, but it's not too easy to see.  

Air filters.  What next?  :)

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Peep ... ZZZZZZZZZzzzzzz

Are you ever so tired at the end of the day that you feel like this chick?

This is one of those days for me!  I can't wait to crawl into bed tonight.  The above chick was so funny - it originally fell asleep standing up.  But by the time I got my camera it had crashed.  :)

All the other chicks must have thought that was a good idea because they soon decided it was nap time too:

Yesterday, one of the Jersey Black chicks attempted the great escape.  Unfortunately for him he was immediately busted by Chicken Guard Tabby who grabbed him and put him back in his home.  The chickens were later all moved to a new home with higher walls ....

I never would have thought that baby chicks - or biddies as my mother-in-law said they should be called! - could be so cute and amusing.

God is so wonderfully creative and has such a great sense of humor.  :)

Monday, April 22, 2013


"As [Jesus] went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him. As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”  - John 9:1-5

I almost always think of Lilly now when I read the above passage from the Bible.  In the past, before I believed that God was sovereign in all things, I would have wondered what had I done wrong to cause Lilly to be born with Trisomy 18.  (OK - I admit it wasn't just the past. I did have that thought a number of times!)  I love Jesus's response to the disciples' compassion-less question:  "this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him."  

Why did Lilly have Trisomy 18?  A genetic disorder that most of the world sees as a horrible thing?  "So that the works of God might be displayed in [her.]"  I can tell you that I have never seen how a little girl, who only lived 17 months, could bless and change so many people.  And she is still doing it even though she is no longer on earth!  Wow - that is God's power!

In the latest issue of Compassion magazine, the president, Wess Stafford, used the above verses as he wrote about children of special needs and how they are even more vulnerable when born into poverty. (pages 2-3)  Stafford paraphrased Jesus's response to his disciples question as:  "Get your mind off blame and get it on how God will work in the life of someone He loves!"  

Jesus doesn't leave that man blind.  The scripture passage continues:
"After saying this, he spit on the ground, made some mud with the saliva, and put it on the man’s eyes. “Go,” he told him, “wash in the Pool of Siloam” (this word means “Sent”). So the man went and washed, and came home seeing."  - John 9:6-7

Stafford pulls these lessons out of those verses:

"Intervening for those with special needs is gritty work.  Like mud, it can be messy and unconventional.
 Intervening is also personal.  Jesus could have simply said the word and everybody would have witnessed a healing.  But he applied His own saliva, His own effort and His own touch.  He personally committed Himself to a special need.
Intervening takes faith, too.  Even with Jesus' unconventional actions, the man had to take a literal walk of "blind faith" to wash off the mud.  Healing came at the end of the path, not the beginning.
And finally, intervening means seeking out and providing a place.  The rest of the story [John 9:8-41] tells us that the healed man is case out of the community by the religious authorities. But Jesus seeks him out - tracks him down, really - to confirm the work of God in his life.  What an amazing affirmation when the once-blind man heard 'the Son of Man ... is the one speaking with you.' The man found a home in Jesus."

I have learned much of this from Lilly.  How rewarding it was to see her smiling responses to us.  Or to hear her laughter!

How I miss kissing Lilly's soft little neck!  I missed her dreadfully this weekend.  

If you are wondering what Compassion magazine is, it is the quarterly magazine of Compassion International.  This is a wonderful (and honest!) group who's mission statement is:  "In response to the Great Commission, Compassion International exists as an advocate for children, to release them from their spiritual, economic, social and physical poverty and enable them to become responsible and fulfilled Christian adults." 

I have sponsored a child through Compassion for about 9 years now and it has been very rewarding.  Here our girl, Selene.  She lives in Mexico:

Every week, Selene goes to the "Compassion project" which is held at a local church and she is given nutritious meals, taught about God, and does different activities.  The leaders at the project also make sure she is healthy and check up on her family.  Selene writes us letters and draws us pictures several times during the year.  (I can only read a little Spanish, so am thankful there is always a translation included with her letters.)  We send money for her birthday and Christmas, and the project always sends pictures of her with the gifts that they purchase for her.  

To my shame, I have not written her as often as I would like to in the past few years.  I have let my own overwhelmed feelings of life get in the way of me taking 10 minutes of writing a letter which I know that she delights in.  So, I am recommitting myself in this.  I am going to write Selene once a month from now on.  No more sporadic patterns!  If you read any of the stories on Compassion's website, you can see what a difference this can make for a child. 

Compassion has a number of different programs, and I am so grateful for their work.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Peep peep peep!

What's that noise?  Peep peep peep!

That's 26 baby chicks!  You know, we homeschool and live on a farm ... I bake my own bread from the wild yeast I caught in the air and wheat berries I grind ... I guess chickens are just a requirement.  ;)

We got several of each of these kinds:  Silkies (Tabby's request), Buff, Ameraucana (my request), Rhode Island Red, Jersey Black, and Deleware. 

Showing the chicks where their food and water are:

I told Tabby that when I was growing up, I sure never imagined I'd live the life I'm living.  God is always surprising me with "what happens next?"

If someone had said I'd have chickens in my living room I'd have stared at them in bewilderment!

"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." - Jeremiah 29:11

OK - God!  I remain curious about those plans ...

Thursday, April 18, 2013

About that SPOONful of sugar . . .

Last week I mentioned that I was having a HORRIBLE time getting Solomon to take his medicine.  I was trying to give him an antibiotic using a medicine dropper and he was screaming and crying, and most was coming back out.  I had the idea of trying to feed it to him using a spoon instead of the dropper, and amazingly it worked!  He fussed the first few minutes and then was, and has been, fine for the most part.  Maybe the dropper was just too foreign to him?  I just wanted to pass that tip on in case anyone has the same issue with a baby or young child.

Tabby, who I think would be happy spending most of her days beading, made me Lilly-colored angel earrings and a suncatcher.  I love them!  Solomon loves the earrings so much that I can't wear them anymore until he's a little older.  ;) 

The old farmhouse we live in was built before the time of electricity and running water. These things were added later.  Air conditioning never did get put in upstairs.  So last week, when the weather turned hot, Frank put a/c window units into the two rooms.   Hunter (aka The Appliance Kid) loves his window unit so much that he had Frank help him make one to play with out of a box.  It even has working knobs and an old electrical cord.  It is named "Knobby."

The other day Hunter took his little fan and put it in the box and plugged it in.  He pointed out that his window unit now made noise and blew air, just like a real window unit.  

Tabby and her friend Cassie (angel baby Hannah's big sister) both have businesses in honor of their sisters.  They frequently like to trade things they make.  Last week a big package arrived from Cassie and it had gifts for all of us.  Cassie had even made bow ties - with Lilly's picture on them - for the boys!  Here is Solomon sporting his bow tie and a big smile (can you tell he's all better now?):

"This is the day the LORD has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it." - Psalm 118:24

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Lilly Memorial Project - Project #1 is finished!

Last Sunday, I FINALLY finished putting together our hospital donation of 17 angel boxes (for Lilly's 17 months).  It took much much longer than I initially had planned, thanks to a new baby and a surprise move and other life happenings.  I hope to get in touch with my contact at UNC Hospital this week to set up a donation time.  Probably for next week because I am still sick.  (Solomon is doing so much better.  Hunter still is coughing and has a runny nose.)

Here are the contents of one of the donations for an angel family:

1. Journal & pen - journals are composition books that Tabby took and covered both the front and  backs with pretty scrapbooking paper
2.Model magic - clay for hand and footprints (donated by Jordan's mom)
3. Angel ornament - also by Jordan's mom (see her Trisomy Tea page here)
4. Disposable camera - donated by my sister-ln-law Nikki
5. Envelope for Wisp-of-Hair
6. Small Kleenex pack
7. Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep business card - from Lilly's photographer
8. Far Flutterby - beautiful comforting book by Karen Kingsbury
9. Lilly & Jesus notecard - with a handwritten sympathy message from me
10. Outfit for burial - this was VERY important to me as I was so thankful we had a beautiful dress already that I was able to use for Lilly - I can not imagine shopping for a burial outfit while mourning.  I have a number of outfits I bought off Ebay, a bunch of crocheted dresses (made and donated by a young woman and her mom who I met through the purchase of one on Ebay), and several burial pouches made by me and some by G.C.
11. Package of Forget-Me-Not seeds
12. Memory box - I used letter, angel, and butterfly stickers to decorate the lid of a photo box
13. Drawstring bag - I made a bag for each donation to put everything in.  I used Lilly-colored ribbon to tie them.

Here are a few photos of Tabby and Hunter helping me fill the boxes:

Everything fit inside the memory boxes (except the book) and I wrapped the outfits in tissue paper and carefully placed in the top of each box:

Here is the big heap of packed bags ready to go.  Pink bags for girls, blue for boys, green for either:

Besides the project tag on each bag, I also made a tag that shows the outfit inside each bag.  On the back I wrote the size and measurements of the outfit.  I figured that would make a nurse's job much easier. 

Now the biggest question is, how to transport all these from the parking lot to inside the hospital?!  Perhaps Hunter's red wagon would be allowed inside ....

The kids and I prayed for the families that would receive these bags.  I know that everyone copes with death in their own way.  But I do pray that there are some things in each bag that will provide some comfort and hope for these families.

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God." - 1 Corinthians 1:3-4

Friday, April 12, 2013

Needing a spoonful of sugar ...

Mary Poppins sang that a spoonful of sugar would make the medicine go down.  Would it help Solomon?  I don't know!

I'm not sure how much medicine actually is getting into my boy.  He despises the stuff.  In fact, he now starts fussing as soon as I put his bib on him.  (He has to wear it because he spits most of the medicine back out and it makes a huge mess.)  It's only 1 teaspoon twice a day, but he makes the 1 t. seem like a gallon.  I think I dread "medicine time" as much as he does.  Much to my disappointment he won't even take any solid food by mouth anymore.   Makes me grateful for how easy it was to give Lilly medicine - through her g-tube!  Thankfully though, Solomon is much better.  Hunter had a really bad day on Wednesday but he is getting better too.  Me - I think I'm slowly making process.

Over at The Craftsy Kitty, Tabby has been busy making soap and tie dyed baby clothing.  (The Craftsy Kitty is Tabby's little business making and selling things in honor of Lilly's memory.)  Here are the boy and girl outfits she tie dyed (onsies size 0-3 months, matching socks):

Her description of the above is here and here.  She has also tie dyed t-shirts for friends.  She takes special orders.  If you have any questions just email her at CraftsyKitty (at)

Here is the link to her soap - she makes many colors and scents - also can be custom made.  This is glycerin soap.  She plans to try making Shea butter soap soon.

 And finally, here is my favorite item she currently has for sale:

The description for the owl applique onesie is here.

Directions on how to order is in the right column of Tabby's Craftsy Kitty blog and again, her email address is: CraftsyKitty (at)

"In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." - 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Book: Embracing Beauty

First, just an update on Solomon.  (Thank you for all the emails and prayers asking about him!  I've been slack posting because Hunter and I are pretty sick too.)  On Sunday evening, he got a fever of 103 degrees.  It was down to 101 by morning and I could tell he still felt awful.  I went ahead and took him to the doctor Monday and am so thankful I did.  Our pediatrician, Dr. R, said that his ears were quite infected.  All the nasty stuff that he can't get out easily had bacteria building up.  Even though I was suctioning him a lot - it's not the same as being able to really blow your nose!  Dr. R prescribed an antibiotic.  She also said do lots of chest percussions to break up crud (we're all good at those from doing them daily on Lilly!).  She also suggested giving him Pulsatilla (homeopathic remedy) to loosen congestion.  (Thankfully I have a basic homeopathy kit so I had it.)  And finally, she said Elderberry is another good natural aid.  I started Solomon on the antibiotic Monday when we got home, and by evening he was already feeling much much better.  And since antibiotics tend to wreck havoc on tummies in our house, I'm giving him a probiotic too.  (Just adding it into his chicken broth.)

As of today, Wednesday, Solomon feels so much better and has no fever.  He still has a pretty nasty cough though.  But overall I think he's doing better than Hunter or I!  He's loving playing peek-a-boo again!

Now if I can just get that antibiotic into him without him throwing a fit and spitting most of it back out!

A number of years ago, I attended the Association of Classical Christian Schools conference with Frank.  (He attends every year, as part of his job.)  The theme that was was "truth, goodness, and beauty."  It got me thinking in a way I don't think I ever had before about these three things in relation to God - especially beauty.

Why is it that we sometimes have the impression that super plain is better?  Perhaps it seems more unworldly?  I remember hearing about some missionaries in a foreign country and the family lived in a purposefully super plain, bare little house.  Some local people came to see them and asked them why didn't missionaries love beauty? Why did they love plain and boring?  The locals were very poor but shared that they were still able to pick wildflowers and they liked to put them in their little shack to add beauty.  That made the missionaries re-think their purposeful plainness!

Because think about this.  Who created beauty in the first place?  The answer, of course, is:  GOD.  In just glancing out my window I am stunned by the variety of flowers, birds, and trees that God created.  And that is only a teeny tiny part of His creativity!  So is it wrong to enjoy beauty?  And to show it?  And share it with others?  In general "no."  (Of course, because of sin, we can turn anything into something that is NOT a good thing.)

"And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good." - Genesis 1:31

So does God want us to hide His beauty?

About a year and a half ago, I posted about a cookbook called Real (Fast) Food by Trina Holden that I was using and loved the recipes from.  (That post is here.)  I've been in contact with Trina off and on since then.  I was interested to learn that she grew up near where we live in N.C.  That is until her family moved to a homestead in upstate New York to live off the land!  They even lived in a tepee until they built their house.  (She writes about her adventures - past and present - on her blog at )

Trina has just published another book called Embracing Beauty.  It is for us moms who are almost constantly changing weight and shape.  The subtitle is:  "practical style for every shape and season of motherhood."  Her timing with this book couldn't have been better for me.  :)  I have now lost all my pregnancy weight, thanks to the information and recipes in the book Trim, Healthy Mama.  As I've mentioned here before, I gained a huge amount of weight with Lilly and due to a number of factors, never lost it all.  After she died, I was starting to lose some more weight, but then was pregnant again and the weight started piling back on.

Now I'm back to a normal weight and am finding a lot of my clothes too big.  You know - that big that's not huge, but definitely "frumpy."  I hate frumpy!  I've written too about how I've struggled with a diastasis for a long time now.  (Where my stomach muscles split during pregnancy and never healed back together.  So my stomach pooches out.  You can check to see if you have a diastasis - here is how.)  I have done much healing there, but recently damaged it again and I feel like I'm starting over.  Ugh.  Skinny but with a stomach pooch that makes me look pregnant.  Back to looking frumpy - and pregnant! - in shirts.  I was totally burned out on doing the diastasis exercises I knew of, until recently when I found, through Trina!, an online "workout studio" where for a small monthly fee, you have access to over 50 different workouts.  (It's like having a personal trainer talking to you and working out with you - all from your computer.)  It is called Fit2b.  The best part is they are "tummy friendly" exercises. I am working through the exercises for moms, specifically targeting the diastasis.  I'm enjoying the variety of exercises and especially that it is only taking about 15 minutes a day to do them, instead of the 45 minutes my other tummy exercises were taking.  Lord willing, I'll have a flat - or flatter! - tummy again soon.  (Fit2b has many many workouts, including for kids.  And, as Tabby noted, the instructor actually wears modest clothes.)

OK, back to frumpy.  So I now need some new clothes.  I don't want frumpy, drab, or "the mom uniform."  (I had to laugh - Trina defines the "mom uniform" as a t-shirt and jeans.  That was more like my "life uniform".  In my later teens and twenties it was the essential heavy metal t-shirt with jeans.  Then it was plain colored t-shirts and jeans.  Then it was babydoll tops and jeans.  Now I prefer skirts and dresses.  Kind of ironic I once saw the heavy metal shirts as "rebellion" but these days just wearing skirts is "rebellion" against culture!)  I like interesting outfits and find I like a more vintage look. I'd actually like more color. But how to start?

That's where Trina's book steps in to guide me.  It's all about helping the reader find their personal style.  She has all kind of guidance on this, including how to do it inexpensively.  Trina shops at thrift stores, just as I mainly do now for clothing.  She even has a chapter in her book on tips for thrift store shopping including when you have little ones in tow.  (She has 3 children and one on the way.)  Speaking of chapters, you can see the table of contents listed here.)

One thing I appreciate about Trina's book is that she begins with sharing her own journey (including the misguided modesty of frumpy jumpers and long denim skirts during the family's homesteading years) and then looks at what God says about beauty.  She writes: "God is where beauty began.  Not only did He create beauty, it's an element of His very being.  Beautiful is something God can't not be, and beauty is something He can't not create.  He created us in His image, as both a reflection of His beauty, and a celebration of His love for beautiful things." (p. 19)

She argues that embracing beauty is an act of worship:  "Because beauty is an attribute of God and something He is passionate about, anything we do to recognize and embrace beauty can actually become an act of worship.  Pausing to take in a sunset, admiring the delicate beauty of a flower, and agreeing with Him as to the beauty of the body He gave us, honors His design and skill as creator, and this is worship."  (p. 19) 

So how should we cloth ourselves, knowing that God created us in His image and that He loves beauty?  Drab and frumpy?  Or the opposite - immodestly and screaming for attention?  Trina discusses these types of things in her chapter on "Expressing God's Glory" and more throughout the book.  She concludes "I've come to realize that what I wear is more than just a barrier between my body and the public, but can actually be a testimony to all I believe about beauty and its Creator."

Wow.  That ought to make you think the next time you reach for the sloppy sweats and ripped t-shirt and head out to go shopping.  I believe that God cares about all the little details in our lives but honestly I had just never thought about it in relation to my clothing very much.  (Other than trying not to dress immodestly of course.)  How short sighted of me!  I am a child of God and so how I am clothed is an important part of that.  Because how I look and act is a reflection on Him.

Well I've been popping on and off the computer all morning to write a little here and a little there.  I need to wrap up now, it's time for me to teach math to Tabby.  (Did you hear her outward groaning from me just thinking that?  Do you know of a pill I could give her to help her enjoy math? Hmmmm ... the inventor would be a millionaire for sure!)  So I will stop here and say that I think you would be blessed by Trina's book Embracing Beauty. (available in several different formats)   There are many chapters of practical advice in it.  I've read a number of fashion type books before, but this is the only one has ever seemed realistic to my life.  :)

"From Zion, perfect in beauty, God shines forth." - Psalm 50:2

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Battling fear

Do you ever get so scared about something you can barely breathe?  I have.  Many times during Lilly's life.  And a number of times in the past few days.

"Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.” - Deuteronomy 31:6 

Yes God, I know.  But ...

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind." - 2 Timothy 1:7

Yes God, I'm thankful but ...

"Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows." - Matthew 10:31

Thank you God, but ... but ...

"When I am afraid, I put my trust in you." - Psalm 56:3

Oh God, I'm really failing with the trust thing.  :(

You see Solomon is sick.  He has a cough.  And a cold.  Not really a big deal is it?  We all get colds.  Many people get colds often throughout a year.  So why is Solomon's cold scaring me?


(Photo - Mother's Day 2011.  After Lilly almost died. The nurses and doctors had brought her back.)

Though today is better, for the past few days there has been a war in my mind.  A battle between fear and trusting God.  Fear of what?  Fear of losing another child.  Fear of the unknown.  Fear of what is coming next.  Fear of making a terrible terrible mistake that affects someone else.

Solomon's cold is bad.  And when he gets agitated, his breathing can be very erratic.  There will be pauses between breaths.  I found myself often lifting his shirt to see if he was retracting.  I kept remembering how Lilly would begin doing that during a sickness, and then things could get frightening very quickly.  I listened to Solomon's chest, lungs, heart several times - with Lilly's stethoscope - just to make sure they weren't "crackly" or "junky" like her's would get.  I sat under a big towel with him, inhaling steaming water with essential oils in it, to open his breathing. I wondered if he needed oxygen instead. Gave him hot baths with the healing salts I made mixed in.  I wondered if I needed medicine so I could use Lilly's nebulizer on him.  I used Lilly's "super snot sucker" on his nose (wow does he hate it!) and thought about the suction machine at the hospital. 

The hospital.  I kept wondering if he needed to go to the emergency room.  Growing up I only went to the emergency room once as a child.  This just wasn't something that my family needed to do.  But it became normal for Lilly and that got me used to it.  I asked my husband if he thought we needed to take Solomon.  He answered what I knew deep down - no we did not.

This is a common cold.  Solomon is going to be OK.  See that?  He was even smiling some when I talked to him.  Or spoon fed him some homemade organic chicken broth.  I am doing everything I can to help him heal quickly.  And most importantly - I keep badgering the Lord with my petitions to heal my baby.  And ... if he does need to go to the hospital ... let me see that clearly.

"He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection." - Psalm 91:4

Lord, I know you are there.

"I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears." - Psalm 34:4

Lord, you hear me.  I wish I were stronger. Please help my faith to grow.

You answer me in so many ways.  In my life.  Over and over.

Lilly, just a few days after almost dying that Mother's Day:

And a week later, ready to leave the hospital.  She lived well another 7 months.

Solomon, just a day before getting sick, sporting a mashed avocado moustache and goatee.

I'm trusting God my little boy will be smiling like this again soon.

What do YOU do when your trust needs "sharpening"?

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Peace out my window

This week has been particularly busy with extra appointments, demands, and I have been preparing to teach a class Thursday evening to one of Tabby's groups.  It feels too busy - it's almost too much.  I'm longing for Friday to come so life will "slow" back to it's normal busyness!

However God blesses me with many "peaceable moments" during the day.  Hunter telling me he loves me for the 20th time.  Solomon's arms around my neck.  Listening to Tabby play piano.  Seeing my husband drive up the driveway at the end of the day.  And being able to look outside through one of our many windows.

One thing I love about living in this home is that there is a farm across the road complete with cows.  It's just so relaxing and fun for some reason.  Whenever I raise the shades in Hunter's room in the morning we look out his window to see if the cows are out.  Here is the view from our front porch:

Zooming in on the cows:

[Jesus speaking] "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." - John 14:27