Image by Laura Ketteman

Image by Laura Ketteman

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Sparkle. :)

My youngest says he loves Mommy's "new sparkle."

Monday, November 28, 2011

Because I love him...

Yeah, I know I already posted it.  But it was in a collection of several photos, and I really needed to single out this ONE photo... because I love it... and I love him.  (And he'll hate that I brought attention to it again, but he'll get over it.  :)

Just to make sure there's no confusion... No, I didn't take the picture... so, no, that's not another woman grabbing at my husband.  :)  KS1 was our photographer for the moment.  I only take credit for the editing.  :)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving Weekend.

My family has been SO lazy this weekend!  I guess we got all of our energy out on Thursday, and ate too much to do anything but play and hangout for the rest of the weekend. :)  I'm SO okay with that.  :)

This was the extent of excitement on Thanksgiving Day:

Who knew JENGA was such an intense game???  Haha!  Leave it to my family.  :)

And of course, there was a ton of food:

And plenty of smiles:

A few naps:

But it all came to an end.

The next day, we did...


We are NOT a black-Friday-shopping family.  Um... no thanks, although the hubby and I DID get in on a few online deals.  :)  Now, THAT's the way to shop on Black Friday.  :)

Other than that, the boys stayed in their jammies.  We ate leftovers... pretty good leftovers, though!  KS2 and I made dumplings to go with some of the leftover turkey:

The next day wasn't too much different, although we DID venture out for our last "Silky's treat" before the end of the season.  Today, our favorite frozen custard place will be closed until next spring.  Sad day in the Ketteman house.  :(  ...much better for my calorie intake, though!  HA!  The boys played outside for a bit.  Other than that ... more of nothing.  :)

We haven't even done Christmas decorations during all of this down time.  Ugh.  Well, there's always next weekend.

Today was a little more normal.  We managed to drag ourselves out of bed to get to church.  :)  I'm glad.  I also forced my family into an impromptu photo session this afternoon... just because I wanted to.  :)  Everyone complained.  It's WAY chilly outside.  Oh well.  They got over it.  That's just the kind of mommy I am.

So... tomorrow starts the craziness of normalcy again.  I'm thankful for weekends like this... it's just what our family needed.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Saving the Best for Last.

“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”
-Psalm 100:4-5 NIV

Today is it!... Thanksgiving Day.  :)  My house smells like turkey.  Yum.  It has been a wonderful day.  Family came over.  We ate a LOT.  We spent time together.  What better way to celebrate being thankful than with the people you love most?  Let's hope that doesn't only last one day a year!!!

So, to close my week of reasons to be thankful (like you can actually ever "close" that subject, right?)...

I am so thankful for my Savior.  I am thankful for His loving mercy and grace.  I am thankful to live in a country where I can worship Him.  I am thankful for my church and my pastors who work so hard and sacrificially.  I am thankful for the faith of my father and mother, who taught me to follow my heavenly Father.  I am thankful for a husband who shares this conviction and leads our family in the same light.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Still Thankful! :)

The boys slept in this morning.

I have a list of "to do"s as long as my arm.  Haha!  Oh well.

For these things, I give thanks.  No, seriously, I do!  :)  My children are healthy and well enough to rest.  And my "to do" list means I have a home to clean, food to cook, and family to welcome into my home.

I am blessed beyond measure.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


I think my day just started off on the wrong foot with a less-than-great situation this morning, and it carried on from there.

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds." -James 1:2

I know I still have an abundance of cause to be thankful.

And I am thankful.

Today, I am thankful for a warm home on a cold, rainy day, cherished friendships and encouraging words.

Monday, November 21, 2011

BFFs. :)

I can't possibly let my list fly by without including my "bestie."  :)  It's funny how things change throughout the years.  "BFF" was popular when I was a kid, and it still is.  But "bestie"?  Who came up with that?  I wonder if teenagers these days have any clue what "LYLAS" means.  :)  Haha!

one from "back in the day":

...and here we are now:

Still love to be goofy and have fun.  :)

Truly, I don't know what my life would be like without her.

Sunday, November 20, 2011


SO many things for which to be thankful!  It's really hard to concentrate on just one per day!  Well, what's stopping me from naming a few?


There are times when "little things" strike me more than others... e.g.: my shampoo.  Yep, thankful for that.  I'm thankful for the blessing that I'm able to take a shower every day.  For some in our world, that would seem like quite the luxury.  And some days, I take two or three!!!  I'm thankful for soap and shampoo and conditioner and body lotion and deoderant and toothpaste and hairspray and makeup and perfume and... I'm thankful!!!

I'm thankful for my kitchen.  I'm thankful for the groceries I'm blessed to be able to purchase.  I'm thankful for a stove that will cook, and a fridge that will preserve.  I'm so thankful that my children are never hungry, and that our dinner table is never lacking.

I'm thankful for the abundance of clothes in our closets... well, they're usually overflowing from the laundry room.  But I'm thankful for them!

And I'm thankful for the flannel sheets on my bed!... for Sunday afternoon naps on fluffy pillows.

I'm thankful for my silly doggies.  They are a nuissance and a joy.  :)

I'm thankful for my computer... and my cell phone (sometimes)... and my CAMERA!  Oh my goodness.

But let's not let today go without a mention of some more special people.  Special people in my life are definitely the blessings for which I'm most thankful.  :)

I give you... the Freeman siblings:

That's us!  The original 5.  :)  It took our parents fourteen years to get all five of us.... from the oldest to the youngest.  :)  It's funny, because the age differences have finally seemed to become less obvious as we've gotten older.  From 35 (me) to 21 (my youngest bro) is several years, but not as crazy different as 24 and 10.  :) 

We certainly have a lot of fun... AND we drive each other crazy... but we laugh and we love deeply.  And that's worth all of the rest.  :)  I think I'll keep 'em.  :)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thankful for My Husband.

There's really no question... He's at the very top of my list.  There is no greater blessing in my life than this guy.  I believe God uniquely designed him, specifically to handle being married to me!  :)  He grounds me.  He balances me.  He encourages me.  He challenges me.  He loves me unconditionally.  We have learned and grown so much together.  Next month, we'll celebrate fifteen years of marriage.  Wow.  Time flies when you're havin' fun!  :)  I am so in love with you, Jason Ketteman.  :)

Friday, November 18, 2011

Thankful to be called "Mom."

I am so incredibly thankful to be a mother.

There is nothing more fulfilling in my life than the responsibility and blessing God has given me in my children.

I'm thankful for sets of three.  :)

I "try" to be thankful for dirty dishes, mounds of laundry, and tiny toys that are constantly wounding the bottoms of my bare feet!  :P

It's all worth it.  :)

I love watching them learn and grow.  I love watching how their personalities are so different from one another... individual, little combinations of my husband and myself... and so many other members of their family... all summed up to make three, very unique individuals.  I love how they interact with one another (most of the time).  I love to watch them play.  Their imaginations are so big!

I'm thankful for tiny fingers and toes that will grow into the hands and feet of strong, young men.  My prayer is that I will teach them well.... that they will follow God's plan for their lives... even if it may not match the ideas of my own.  :(  Even on the hard days, it is an absolute joy to be their mamma.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thanksgiving in a WEEK?!!!

All over Facebook, folks have posting their "thankfulness" for the month of November.  Some of my FB friends have even done a 365 challenge... 365 days to list a year's worth of reasons to be thankful.

Do I have 365 reasons to be thankful?  Absolutely.  Have I listed one every day?  Nope.  But I really enjoy reading everyone else's reasons!!! :)

However, in the midst of some of the less-than-happy goings on in the life of my family, I thought this would be a perfect time to focus on some positives...  so, I'll take this week to list a few... for my own sake... and if it happens to bring a smile to someone else's face, all the better!

So, here we go... (not in any particular order... just what strikes me in the moment)...

My parents:

More now than ever, I'm reminded that it's such a blessing to have both of my parents still in my life.  Life is precious and sweet.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

He Restores My Soul.

Celebrating birthdays one moment.  Saying goodbye to a loved one, the next. 

My sweet, wonderful sister-in-law lost her father last week. 

I've tried several times to write about this in the last few days.  Each time, I've stopped and deleted it.  I just don't have the right words.  The thing is, I didn't know Lisa's dad very well.  I could probably count on one hand the times I've met him.  And, yet, his daughter has become so much a part of our family...  Naturally, when you see someone you love hurting... you hurt FOR them. 

Jacob and Lisa are only in their twenties, but they've been together for what seems like forever.  :)  ( a good way, mind you!)  They were highschool sweethearts, so we've basically watched them grow up together!  I have pictures of them all dressed up in formal attire for their highschool banquets... Later, in their caps and gowns, at graduation.  :)  My little boy was the ringbearer in their wedding.  :)  We've watched them move into their first home.  We were all elated when they announced that they were expecting their first baby last fall!  And this summer, we celebrated as their gorgeous, healthy, little boy entered our world... the 6th grandchild on our side.  On Lisa's side, this little one is the first. 

Although I've not been with Lisa's parents throughout each event, it goes without saying that they've shared their daughter with us all these years.  An affection grows, in having that connection with family.  No, I didn't know Lisa's dad all too well, but I know his daughter.  I've watched her grow from a cute, young, insecure teenage girl... into a beautiful, loving, nurturing wife and mother.  She has woven her way into the hearts of all of us... not just that of her husband (my brother)... but all four of his siblings, as well as our mom and dad.  And that's not always the easiest thing to do, I'll admit.  We so love her.  (I don't even think we girls mind so much that Lisa's our dad's favorite anymore!  Haha!)  :) 

The last several weeks, I've watched her support her parents unwaiveringly.  My mom watched little Benjamin, while Lisa went to every doctor's appointment, stayed for every test, and often stayed with her mother to help her care for her dad.  My brother supported her every step of the way.

Then, this week, I watched her say goodbye to her daddy.  She maintained strength, beauty, and grace.  She stayed by her mother's side... and leaned on my sweet, baby brother.


My pastor is preaching an entire series on Psalm 23.  I've never given these verses so much thought, until now.

The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

This morning, my pastor made a comment about how hard we work to keep our physical bodies healthy and strong... but we spend so little time and attention on the state of our souls... the part of our beings that are actually eternal.

I am reminded of how temporary life is.

I am reminded to treasure the people I love.

I am reminded to say "I love you."

I am reminded to slow down.

To place more value on my soul than on my body.

To enjoy.

To rest.

To refresh.

To restore.

To spend time alone with God.

And I want to remember not to forget...

He leadeth me, he leadeth me,

by his own hand he leadeth me;
his faithful follower I would be,
for by his hand he leadeth me.

And when my task on earth is done,
when by thy grace the victory's won,
e'en death's cold wave I will not flee,
since God through Jordan leadeth me.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Celebrating Life.

Today, we are celebrating one of my little boys and the day he was born.

Doesn't this face just make you want to smile?  :)  He wasn't even two years old when this picture was taken.  He continues to brighten our lives every day.  He is sweet and sensitive and loving and giving... He also has a hot temper!  Funny combo, isn't it?  :)  We love him to pieces.  Happy birthday, my wonderful boy.

My photo
ilLaurastrations Photography began in Spring of 2009.