Monday, May 21, 2018

A 'Staycation'

With Mother's Day and my Mom's birthday last week, we turned a couple of days kind of into a 'staycation' (twice!) and enjoyed rest and relaxation and lots of family time. It was a wonderful several days! So refreshing after some very busy weeks and months.

We started off with Ivan, Leah and Abel coming over the Saturday before Mother's Day . . . .

Mother and daughters . . . so thankful for the special mom God blessed us with and her heart for following the Lord and being a godly example to us. I especially appreciate her servant heart and how she thinks so much of others!  

And . . . it was Leah's first mother's day! Which was really special. :) It is beautiful to see her as a mom to Abel and to their precious little blessing due in October! She is about halfway through now and they (and we!) are getting even more excited to meet baby!

 Mom and I (Photo by Leah)

For these next pictures which are Leah's, I am going to steal her captions that she had on facebook. :)

" I love this boy!" (Photo and caption by Leah)

"It’s impossible for my mom to go outside without pulling at least one weed 😂 " (Photo and caption by Leah)

 "These two ❤️ After taking a hit to the wrist from the soccer ball, Abel was icing it while being a little rascal at the same time and refusing to let me get his face in the picture. If this photo had sound, you would hear a lot of laughs coming from behind that turned head!" (Photo and caption by Leah)

"Feeding time for the goats" (Photo and caption by Leah)

Dad had also gotten Abel a soccer ball recently, and since we don't have goals, they used 5-gallon buckets as 'goals'. It was so fun to watch and listen to them! They were trying to see how many kicks it took to kick the ball across the yard into the bucket. Whoever got the fewest kicks won. It was quite the rousing and entertaining game!

Abel with his first kick!

Such fun family times!

The next day, Dad, Mom and I went to the Katy Trail (I had enjoyed my time there with friends so much a few weeks ago, that we decided to go the three of us), and we weren't the only ones with that idea as there were a LOT of people there with it being Mother's Day weekend!

It was beautiful out, and we enjoyed the time together walking along, taking pictures, listening to the water flow, watching birds, and looking at the unique rock formations.

Dad and Mom enjoying the view while waiting for me to catch up . . . I had seen a rider and his mom that I know from the Therapeutic Riding Center so went to say 'hi'. And when he saw my binoculars, he excitedly asked if he could look at some birds! I spent a fun time with him while he looked through them at birds, trees, bikers, and anything else he could find!

Swallow nests up high on the cliffs

Water flowing down out of the rocks . . . a lovely sound!

Makes me so curious what this was used for back when the trail was the railroad!


It was neat to see this majestic Bald Eagle soaring overhead!

History in the rocks . . . the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad lines

It was back to regular life for a few days, and then it was time to celebrate Mom's birthday! The evening before her birthday, we went up to Ivan and Leah's place and she opened her gifts, we went to a park for a walk, had dinner at a country/family-style buffet, watched a "Fixer-Upper" episode, and then headed home. It was a special and enjoyable time celebrating the life of a very special person . . . so thankful for you, Mom!!

Ivan was jumping on the bridge to show us how 'stable' it was. :)

A creek winding through

My wonderful parents

Ivan blazing the trail

Pointing out the poison ivy to Leah . . . leaves of three, let it be!

Anyone have an idea what causes this? We saw several trees that had these strange clumps of disfigured looking leaves right at the trunk. We were thinking it was some kind of poisoning maybe? Or a disease?

Finding and looking at a Rose-Breasted Grosbeak singing away

We have lots of fun together! :)

Love these people so much! (And the photographer and Abel, too!)

Sisters and best of friends

On Mom's actual birthday, we had a fun family day with the three of us and she chose to spend it driving through a couple of historic towns looking at old homes and buildings, a spontaneous stop at "The Donut Palace", and driving through Eagle Bluffs Conservation Area and walking a lot there, too. It was such a wonderful day and was thoroughly enjoyed!

An old railroad bridge

It was neat to see the old, beautiful homes! I love their architecture and history. Of the below ones, which is your favorite?

(This is Dad and Leah's favorite)

(And mine)

The Post Office which used to be the bank

We came home for a bit to get a cooler of drinks and headed out to Eagle Bluffs . . . .

Faces only a mother could love ;)

A Dickcissel singing away . . . these birds were quite numerous and let us get close to them. Their song is beautiful!

The Dickcissel in between songs

Looking for soras and wrens. It wasn't successful, but it was fun exploring! (Photo by Mom)

Mom was happy to see a bunch of her favorite animals

It was neat to see these Hooded Merganser babies! They were with their mom, but she was under the water when this photo was snapped.

A Bald Eagle perched on a Wood Duck nest box at the edge of the water

Mom enjoying taking pictures

Ah, one of the beautiful views! I loved soaking it all in! There is just something about being out in God's creation . . . listening to the birds, seeing the wildlife, feeling the breeze, and everywhere you look, seeing such diversity, detail, and beauty.

Dad looking for birds out on the water

Me walking along taking pictures and watching for birds (Photo by Mom)

This Red-Winged Blackbird was putting on quite the courtship display! Usually they don't let me get close, but this one stuck around. It was neat to watch him!

An Eaglet on the nest!

A muskrat chowing down on cattail stalks

Now it has been back to regular daily life. :) Which is fun and enjoyable, too!


  1. I enjoyed the post, Sarah!

  2. AnonymousMay 22, 2018

    Hi Sarah!
    It's wonderful to have you back posting again. You were missed. I always enjoy the pictures and adventures you write about.
    Staycations are my favorite! I bet it was especially nice after the rush of business.
    It's funny. You've been posting about the Rose-Breasted Grosebeak. We've just begun seeing those as well coming to our feeders! We've never seen them before this year. Then again, it's the first time we've put out feeders.
    My congratulation to your whole family and Leah! How exciting to have a new little one on the way. I'm sure you all are looking forward to having regular baby snuggles. :)
    Take care and God Bless!

    P.S. I'm partial to the brick house. Though, farm-style houses reign as my favorite architecture. It's a blessing to living in the Midwest that there's plenty farm-style architecture to enjoy!

    1. It was good to hear from you, Christina! Thank you, it is good to be back!

      How fun that you have been seeing the Rose-Breasted Grosbeaks now. Who knows, maybe they are ours who decided to move north. :) They are beautiful! Enjoy!

      Thanks so much for your congratulations! It is very exciting indeed! She is halfway now, and we are SO looking forward to baby's arrival. She is feeling quite a bit of movement now which is so special for her!

      The brick house is nice! I have seen pictures of the inside before and it has amazing architecture inside, too. Farm-style houses are my favorite architecture as well. Yes, a blessing we get to enjoy living in the midwest!

  3. AnonymousMay 22, 2018

    Isn't the plant mistletoe?

    1. Good suggestion, Anonymous! Though no, it is a tree with a strange bunch of leaves on it.

  4. How lovely to have such family times together.
    My favourite house is the same as your Sarah, I ove the geentle colours of the paintwork.

    1. It was indeed, Elizabeth!

      Sounds like we have similar tastes. :) I liked the paintwork as well!

  5. Lovely photos! Thanks for sharing. xx

    1. You're welcome, Linda, and thank you!

  6. AnonymousMay 23, 2018

    What a lovely time you all had together Sarah:)

    Staycations are great with the added bonus of sleeping in your own bed.

    I like the house with the red tile roof and porch covering -the second one, but they are all nicely made.

    Fiona x

    1. It was indeed, Fiona! They are indeed great. :) And I like the added bonus you mentioned!

      The second house is lovely. I almost chose that as a favorite, but the big front porch on the blue one made it take first place!

  7. Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful family with us. You're awesome and quite the inspiration! Are you on Facebook? I'd love to follow you. God Bless! Miss Lila

    1. You're welcome, Miss Lila! It is fun to share. :) And thank you for your sweet comment! Yes, I am on facebook . . . if you'd like, send me an e-mail at and I can let you know how to find me! Blessings!


Thanks so much for your comment! Each one is read and enjoyed. :)