Welcome to Fir and Cypress! I so glad you came to visit me today and that you'd like to know a little more about why I'm here! Let me first introduce the cast of characters you'll meet around here. 

I'm Carolyn, author of Fir and Cypress and known as Mommy around this house.I'm a person who loves to live her life with lots of wonder over what I see and experience. I believe in getting excited, enjoying the little things, and not worrying about embarrassing myself. I don't avoid mud puddles, but I do try very hard to treat everyone with respect, even those I don't agree with. I hope you'll do the same. My biggest goal with this blog is to encourage. To encourage you to try something new, to be willing to make mistakes and still get on the "bicycle" and try again, and to see your job as wife and mom as extremely valuable and desperately important!

 This is my husband of 14 years, Brandon, and though he doesn't write on the blog it would never get done without his support! My husband is a behind-the-scenes kind of guy who is like that man you know who is the one who everyone asks for help. He can fix virtually anything from cars to computers to the little tiny piece in your water pump that made the whole thing not work. He's likely to tell you he's not very creative and then go and fix something without the right tools, parts or any assistance. ;) I am super proud to be his wife and best friend. And I love that in 14 years of marriage, not one day has gone by where we haven't shared a laugh and smile together, no matter what we were facing.

This is my oldest son. He's a typical almost 9 year old in many ways, loves soccer, Minecraft, camping, and running at top speed. He's my high energy, can't sit still, always talking child. If you happened to be in his path he may knock you over on his way by, but he'll come back and say he's sorry and offer you a kiss. ;) He's incredibly eager, will eat almost any food you put in front of him, and is always willing to try new things. He is ALWAYS helping his Mama and his smaller siblings all look up to him. I am so proud to be his Mama.

Did you see that blur that just whizzed by you? That was my second son. He is very likely about to take the path least chosen leading to his next adventure. And don't ask his opinion unless you are prepared to receive it with full candor and a smirk of fun. He is a natural born leader, always wants to know why, will catch you in your smallest inconsistency and is pretty sure he knows the best way to do just about everything. He also is incredibly kind, you'll always find him gently playing with a small child if there is one around. He has a heart of gold if you can just get him to drop his sarcastic sense of humor for long enough to show it. He keeps me humble as a mom, reminds me that not all parenting "philosophies" work for every child, and gives me a sympathetic heart every time I see a mom struggling in public with their little one. I am thankful for him every day, he is always showing me that proverbial "log" in my own eye.

     See that little girl all in pink wearing the princess crown and the Cinderella shoes? That's my daughter and my one girl in this sea of boys. She loves pink, babies, playing kitchen and snuggling her Daddy. But before you categorize her and think you know all about her, she also loves mud puddles, playing "fight" with her big brothers, and can knock down either of her bigger brothers and usually run faster than them too all while wearing a pink skirt and froo-froo shoes. She also happens to be the spitting image of her mom at that age. I love playing dolly's with her, having her help me in the kitchen and when she crawls in my bed late at night to snuggle her mama. 

Here's the baby of the family and my third son. He's a delightful mix of his two older brothers with a little bit of flexible and a little bit of stubborn mixed together. We don't know if he'll be our last little one or not and so we delight in little prince cutey pants every day. He loves to snuggle mom and dad, thinks he can do EVERYTHING his bigger siblings can and is terrified of toys that move on their own. I love his sense of humor, how he points out things that go "beep beep" and every plane that flies above his head, and each slobbery kiss.

     Speaking of slobbery kisses, meet Dakota! If she could talk she would tell you that she's REALLY our firstborn. She was raised by a cat and has been known to jump on the kitchen counter and then not know how to get back down. She likes to run through the kids play tunnel, her "mean kitty" squeeze toy and barking at the neighborhood dogs. 

       And last, but not least, meet Sammy. Don't get to close or he may lean on you and knock you over. When he's not stealing baby dolls for something soft to lay on, he likes ear rubs, sleeping, and swiping food from the table (which happens to be just the right height for his large black nose). He's a greyhound rescue, and dislikes dog crates, loud noises and people who are mean to doggies.

So that's us! We'll talk about firmly Biblical Christian Living (don't go google it, I made it up, I just mean living Sola Scriptura in our Christian walk, you can google that instead), homeschooling, practical tips for mom's with little ones, healthy recipes for my family and yours, and ways to live with minimal toxins and harmful ingredients in our lives (with a little bit of "this and that" thrown in!).   I truly value the comments you leave and enjoy hearing from you! If you have any ideas about something you would really like me to write about, please let me know!

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