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A day on the lake

A few Sundays ago my brother offered to take us out on the lake. So we slept in, had a great big breakfast, watered the garden, loaded up a picnic & a cooler and headed out for the open waters. The kids each took their turns being thrilled: the big truck we rode in, the life jackets, the birds, the splashes of water, driving, honking, climbing around to see all the views. Amazing day. Thanks bro-you’re the best.

Joss was more excited about the life jacket Riley brought her than being on a boat.

Boating Beauties

Checking for fishies

Trip driving with Riley-Riley laughing because all he wants to do is honk the horn.

The usual attempt at a family shot-3 out of 4 is not bad.

"working" with Ri Ri-another highlight of the day for Jossi

2011 DU Committee Fun Shoot

We had our Lake Ray Roberts DU committee 2011 kick off meeting on Sunday. As long has I have been hunting and shooting I have never officially shot skeet, sporting clays, or any other shooting event. I must say that it was a blast. We did a sporting clays shoot. Sporting cays is a lot like golf in that you go from hole to hole, or station to station to shoot the “birds”. Mechanical throwers launch the clays at varying angles and distances that mimic real hunting conditions. There is even a mock-rabbit where a extra tough clay is launched across the ground and you have to shoot it as it rolls. I was pretty nervous that I would be horrible at this but I really had a good time and I think I ended up shooting pretty well.

Here are a few pictures I was able to take.  The lighting was horrible for good pictures.  I kept trying to capture the shell as it ejects from the action but I could not get a fast enough shutter speed for it not to be blurry because there was not enough light.  Maybe next time!

Re-Loading Time

My buddy Shawn

I even made it on camera.

Check out that form.....

My favorite capture. If you look closely you can see where he just hit the clay.

Austin shooting at one of the "rabbits".

Shawn going for one of the hardest stations of the day.


We needed some more life in this old house, more noise. (I know, you’re thinking “What?!”) But it’s true. I long for noise, life, sounds of running feet, laughter <hollering> of little people, cheeping birds, the moos of the cows.  One of my bigger fears and battles is loneliness. So now we will go from Camp Thorkildsen, to Thorkildsen Farm (that’s what Luke says when he teases me for begging for baby goats & new puppy).  We started out with 8 little chicks and then decided to add a few more to be safe. We have any number of fearsome predators around these parts and I’m sure they’ll find our new little gals as soon as they are out in the sunshine. I’m so excited to have fresh eggs and produce this summer. I love the concept of being self-sufficient and growing as much of our food as we can.  We now have 15 chicks-3 of which are named Cinderella, a Snow White, Belle & Rapunzel as well.  So now I’ve got what I asked for! Trip incessantly chants “I want one! I want one!” and “baby chicks?” What a good little caretaker he is-checking in on them every half hour. Not to mention the cheeping and pecking of these cute chicks who turned into strangely ugly adolescent hens overnight!


Fresh air. Deep breaths. Warmth on my back when I’m hunched in my garden. These are the things that keep me going from day to day. Isn’t spring so healing? Maybe it’s just me, pulling through the deep darkness of this past winter. The Lord gives and He takes away. This keeps reverberating through my mind. I also heard this echo in my mind 4 years ago. Standing in church with my eyes closed, trying to sing. Wanting to sing. But I had grief caught in my throat. You know that feeling? It’s just caught right there between a cry and a scream-but it’s stuck. Don’t move, maybe it won’t come out. That’s what I battled standing in church that day after my first miscarriage. And then, through the noise in my mind, a still small voice. He gives & He takes away Keri. A gush of air so sweet & fresh rushes into my lungs, like a river washing away my hurt. That river just kept on flowing. Through years of valleys during marriage, health problems, moves, dreams realized, dreams taken away, loss of life, loss of love, redemption of love. He gives & He takes away. That’s all you need to know. I don’t understand it, but I can trust it. That’s all I need to know to get me through.


These kids, they are trouble! These shots are from friday night. We had friends over & the girls terrorized Trip. He came out and said, “Jossi did it!”

The arm after the crime was committed

THe arm after the crime was commited

A close up of the victim

Crime scene

A trip to Barron Downs

A few weekends ago we ventured out to Stephenville, TX, population 20,000 people; 200,000,000 head of cattle. My sister Kelli & her horse trainer hubby live on 3,000 acres of wide open spaces. So we roamed, shot, fished, sat, whittled (just kidding), bulldozed burn piles, met new animal friends, ate, drank & were generally merry. We had a great time…

kids on a fence

the country life

a curious horse

Jossi horse whispering

My sis & seb

kids on a boat

Trip being brave...

Mommy being brave

pretty fish

my baby love

ya, I'm tough (notice the face of focus)

We love the weekend.



First cast of a quick friday afternoon fishing trip.