On March 18, 2011 I had no idea I could make it to 10,000 views. Thanks to you all we did it. During the past year, I’ve received many comments: The overwhelming majority have been 100% positive with much encouragement. However, there have been a few negatives. Someone near and dear to me said several times, “I don’t understand who would want to read your blog.”, or “How did you get 50 views today?” . I’ve always enjoyed criticism because it makes either me or what I am working on better. It’s nice to say that this particular person does compliment me more now and encourages me to follow my “writing dreams” . LOL

In conjunction with my blog writing, I was receiving some wonderful feedback from Parents magazine (2 million subscribers) regarding an article where Carter and Ammon engage in learning activities as we travel. God has not blessed me with a published article with Parents , and the two assistant editors I was corresponding with BOTH left the magazine for new opportunities in their careers. I am planning one more round of “help” from a Parents editor then I am moving on. After reading through the magazine several times, I’m not sure if this is the conduit by which God wants share my work with millions of people. As I have asked a handful of you all, now I am asking all of you to please pray that the Holy Spirit guide me where I need to be in writing articles.

The novel I mentioned to you all back in June of 2011 is still “brewing”. The way I see it I need a fan base to help me sell the book, and as I just mentioned, I don’t have enough exposure to help me sell it. The publishing and advertising fees cost a lot of money, and I don’t think I could recoup my investment money nor make a profit without a fan base.

However, I love writing about my life with Ammon and Carter, and I will continue to do so in this blog. Carter and Ammon are such blessings, and I am honored that you all want to read and share such blessings with me. Take care and God’s blessings on you. Haven

Carter: Our photographer & Ailments

We are coming out of 3 weeks of household ailments. Over 3 weeks ago, Carter had a viral infection that simply had to run its course. Last week, Ammon got an ear infection coupled with a horrible cough (not croup or whooping cough but horribly congested cough) that kept her/us up during 5 straight consecutive nights!  Praise the Lord (once again) for medicines: cough expectorants, suppressants, steroid cough medicines, antibiotics! Oh, well, so is the life of a 3 year-old. We’re just about all well now.

As I've mentioned before, we've started a 5th Generation of dog lovers!

While Ammon was catching up on some sleep Monday with a nap ( a VERY RARE occurrence these days but after nights without sleep), Carter and I were out on the patio. I had decided to grill Carter and Ammon’s hamburgers outside this afternoon, so I was flipping burgers while Carter played with his cars. Katie, Ferd, and Sissy (the coon hound family) had been out on the mountain, returned, and were milling around the house, and Sissy had been watching me clean the grill and begin flipping burgers. As I was finishing a round of flips, I noticed Carter coming from the garage with a 22 oz. cup of dog food. He then proceeded to moisten the kibble with the water spigot from near our back door. After preparing the food, he placed in front of Sissy’s nose!  She ate it.  I was surprised and proud that Carter could help feed the dogs. I took some pictures then decided to let Carter take some pictures as well. Once again, he is a great, 3 year old photographer.

Taken by Carter Caylor-Brown: 3-26-2012
"Sissy eating dogfood"

Have a Blessed Tuesday Everyone.

Carter, the hair-cut pro!

He was the best behaved 2 year old they've ever had when he started! Carter is excellent when getting his hair cut.

Carter had just turned 2 when we first went to Hixson to get his hair cut at the Classic Barber. They have always been AMAZED  at what a great client he is. He has never flinched once, and he is so kind, respectful, and courteous.

Carter’s latest, spring haircut went great on Wednesday. After our trip to the barber, we went to Logan’s Roadhouse where Carter and Ammon chose corn dogs for lunch.

Carter & Ammon Moments (Back to back)

Our holding hands evening, and the 1st Day of Spring
March 20, 2012 (Tuesday)

The two sweet things happened minutes apart but both meant SO MUCH. With the onset of Daylight Savings Time,  our chore schedule inside and outside the house shifts.  Since the time has changed and it so warm in the evenings, we have returned to jogging about an hour before darkness sets in. We also eat dinner earlier and feed the Coonhounds earlier.

After dinner, Ammon, Carter, and I had gathered up the Coonhounds’ dog food, and we headed to the barn.  The three dog food pans with the moist kibble, bread, and lunch meat probably weigh approximately 5 pounds in total, so I carry them. Ammon and Carter were lagging behind playing, and I was headed to the dog lot. I turned around to see Carter running up behind me. I thought he was going to ask to carry a pan; however, upon reaching me, he went to my left side with my free hand and placed his hand in mine so he could walk with me to the barn. I smiled, and My Daddy H heart was thrilled and soft. Ammon joined us in a few seconds, and we entered the dog lot.

Upon feeding the dogs, we three exited the lot. Carter ran ahead to the swing set, and this time Ammon joined me and took my hand. I smiled again and thought about how 3 minutes earlier Carter had taken my hand, but this time, I had some dog food grease on it. I looked down at Ammon, and I said, “I’m holding your hand lightly because it’s dirty after I fed the dogs.” Without saying a word, Ammon took the back of hand, kissed it, and looked up and smiled. My dirty hand did not matter to her. As Carter, Ammon, and I approached the swings, I said a quick, silent prayer. “God thank you so much for my Carter and Ammon! They are such blessings!”

St. Patrick’s Day & Dublin, Ireland

St. Patrick’s Cathedral Dublin, Ireland: June 13, 2011

I’ve always enjoyed all the “wearing of the green” and the leprechauns on St. Patrick’s Day. However, it wasn’t until our day in Dublin, Ireland June of 2011, that I felt a “spiritual conncetion” with Saint Patrick.  I had even read several times yet without absorbing much history of Saint Patrick to really know his story.

St. Patrick

He had been taken from  homeland in Wales (Great Britain) to be a slave in Ireland. He was approximately 16, and by his early 20s he had made it back to Wales. He then became a minister and returned to Ireland.

He writes that he “baptized thousands of people”. He ordained priests to lead the new Christian communities. He converted wealthy women, some of whom became nuns in the face of family opposition. He also dealt with the sons of kings, converting them too.

Carter, Nana, Haven, & Ammon (admiring the vaulted ceilings)
June 13, 2011: St. Patrick’s Cathedral Dublin, Ireland

My favorite building in Dublin, Ireland was St. Patrick’s Cathedral. It had such a warmth and “spirit” about it. It wasn’t like other cathedrals I have been in where it was like a museum instead of a place of worship. St. Patrick’s work was filled with love and giving, and his spirit seems to permeate his cathedral.

Here comes Spring!

First Mow of 2012

Wow, totally different from last year’s 1st mow (https://havensideals.wordpress.com/2011/03/25/mowing-time-already/) ! On Thursday, I wore shorts, kept a hat on, and had a t-shirt on. It was a good and warm day to cut the grass with a whapping 78 degrees. I also have a praise report that the lawn mower did great.

Our only, small cherry tree is so beautiful right now. We also have the red bud trees brightly budding as well. The coon hounds, Katie, Ferd, & Sissy had a great day Thursday out of their barn as well. They stayed on the mountain for about 4 hours then spent the afternoon lounging around outside the house.

Carter and I just got over some infections: Carter’s was viral, and I had a sinus coupled with a bladder infection. It’s hard to ask a 3 year old to explain how he feels, but I felt AWFUL  for about 4 days!  We could not believe that Carter did not “share” his virus with Ammon. It was a small miracle because it was a first for them.

I hope everyone is blessed with a great Friday.