The heart of a child

January 1, 2014

Our daughters, aged 5 and 7, have been playing with their new drink dispenser all afternoon having tea parties and pretending to be princesses. This “drink dispenser” resembles a Keurig coffee maker, so they feel like adults.

After hours of playing and many cups of “tea” later, they approach me with a plan…

“Mommy, we want to use the drink dispenser to have a lemonade stand and send all the money to an orphanage so that those kids can have a mom and dad some day.”

Wow. WOW! Where did they come up with this?!?

Yes, we have been talking a lot about orphans lately because of the command in the Bible…

“Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.” (James 1:27 ESV)

We have been praying about how we, the Flener family, can take care of orphans and widows in their distress.

But…I had no idea that our kids were processing any of it.

They notice. They hear. They listen…even when it doesn’t appear that they do.

And, I guarantee you one thing…this Mommy is going to do everything in my power to make sure that lemonade stand is successful! I am, after all, an entrepreneur at heart. 🙂

So, in the Spring, when the grass is turning green, the flowers are blooming and we are all struggling with allergies…the Fleners will be selling lemonade, homemade donuts, bread, bracelets (and whatever else we can come up with) to raise money for children who are far less fortunate than my sweet children.

Anyone thirsty?!?

4 years old?!?

April 6, 2012

This is Alyssa…or “A-kissa” as we like to call her.  She’s full of love and full of kisses.

I’ve had a hard time with her turning 4.  Grace was 4 when we moved to Denver.  4-year-olds are big kids.  My sweet Alyssa is now a big kid.  🙂

  1. What is your favorite color? Pink
  2. What is your favorite food? Tilapia
  3. What do you want for your birthday dinner? Fish tacos and cooked carrots
  4. What do you want to do for your birthday party? Princess Tea Party
  5. What was your favorite part of the day? Hanging out with my friends
  6. Who are your favorite friends? Addison, Annie, Caroline, McKenna, Aspen, Willa and Lyla
  7. What are your favorite movies? Sound of Music and Annie
  8. What is your favorite cartoon? Super Why and Little Einsteins
  9. What is your favorite book? BOB books
  10. What is your favorite restaurant? McDonald’s
  11. What is your favorite thing to do outside? swing on the swingset
  12. What is the best thing about staying home with Mommy and Chase? spending time with Mommy and Chase
  13. What is your favorite thing for lunch? Peanut butter and jelly
  14. What is your favorite breakfast food? cereal
  15. Who is your favorite character in a movie? Belle
  16. What was your favorite present? everything
  17. Why are you so excited to be 4? Because I just am
  18. What is your favorite outfit? a dress or a skirt
  19. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas
  20. What is your favorite lovey/doll? Pillow Pet

While asking her these questions, she attacked my cheeks and arms with kisses.  That explains my sweet 4-year-old in a nutshell.  🙂


out on the farm

September 28, 2011

Last year we went with some friends to this fun little farm. They have some fun activities for the kids, but the best part is going on a hay rack ride through the farm to pick your own veggies. It is amazing!

We were trying to find a good time to take the kids, but our schedule is super busy. So, we settled on a Tuesday since Matt is off work. Unfortunately, that meant Grace didn’t get to go because she is in school. That’s been my biggest (and really ONLY) struggle with the school schedule. I feel like if we do anything while Grace is in school, then she misses out. However, I remind myself that she’s getting to do super fun things (including a field trip to another farm!) and I can’t deprive Alyssa & Chase of fun activities during school hours.

So, all of that to say, we went to Miller Farms on Tuesday…and had a BLAST!  Another family from the Denver area was on our veggie-picking-tractor and we had such a great time with them.  We even exchanged phone numbers.  🙂  And, she inspired me to re-start this blog.  They too have family far away (in Texas!), so she’s very diligent to update their blog with pictures, videos and updates.  I’m going to do the same.  🙂

Speaking of which…here are some pics from our day on the farm…

To enter the farm, you pay per person and each person gets 5 shopping bags to fill with goodies.  We had 20 bags to fill, which is a ton of food.  Our kitchen is now stocked with a plethora of corn, potatoes, onions, cabbage, carrots, celery, melons, pumpkins (orange & white), tomatoes, many different types of peppers…am I forgetting something?!?  We had so much food that we decided to bag up some groceries for our neighbors and share the wealth.  It was fun to share.  🙂

I’ve been busy making homemade spaghetti sauce, decorating with pumpkins, and searching for other recipes.  In the near future I’m going to make (and freeze) some potato soup and salsa.  🙂  Yummy!!


My date with Alyssa

February 10, 2011

This morning while Grace was at preschool, Alyssa and Chase went with me to the coffee shop. One of Alyssa’s favorite things to do (and Grace’s too, for that matter) is go to the coffee shop and get hot chocolate with whipped cream and sprinkles. We make it a special treat and it usually involves some one-on-one time with either Mommy or Daddy.

Today, while we were drinking our delicious hot chocolate, I asked Alyssa some questions…here are her answers.

What is your favorite color? Purple
Where is your favorite place to go? Target
What do you like to see at Target? the baby dolls
Who is your favorite friend? Grace
What is your favorite game to play? Candyland
What is your favorite toy? the baby doll stroller
What is your favorite cartoon? Sid the Science Kid
What is your favorite music? Bible songs CD
What is your favorite food? bananas
What is your favorite TV channel? Daddy’s

She’s such a sweet girl and it was so fun to not only spend time with her, but to hear her answers to these questions. 🙂

Grace dancing at the Domain

Grace dancing at the Domain

This weekend has been a blast.  Not “fun” as in – crazy, wild, fun.  But “fun” as in – I love being with my family, “fun.”  “Fun” as in – I’m refreshed and ready to start a new week, “fun.”  Here’s what we did.

I had a baby shower to go to Saturday afternoon, so Matt took the girls to get an oil change and car wash.  Fun for Momma because I had some time with friends.  Fun for Daddy and the girls because they had time together.

After nap time, we were antsy to get out of the house.  Matt suggested going to the Domain to walk around.  (For those who don’t live in Austin, the Domain is an upscale, outdoor shopping area).  Matt had a little extra work clothing allowance burning a hole in his pocket, so we went to Macy’s first.  As we walked out of Macy’s and started checking out the other shops, we noticed that they had blocked off the main road running through the Domain.  A stage was set up and signage said there was a fashion show.  In the distance, we could hear live music which sparked our curiosity.  We walked to the opposite end of the Domain and asked a security guard what was going on.  Come to find out, the fashion show had an after party with a live band, free drinks and desserts!  One of our favorite things is to stumble upon something cool.  This fit that criteria.  It was so much fun!  Grace danced the night away.  Alyssa shook her booty in the stroller.  Matt and I enjoyed watching them.

Today we had another great day!  After church we drove to Marble Falls and ate at the Blue Bonnet Cafe.  AMAZING!  Good, comfort food.  They are known for their pies.  DELICIOUS!  We had the peanut butter pie and it was fabulous.  We practically licked the plate clean.  After we had stuffed ourselves silly, we went to Sweet Berry Farms and picked strawberries.  It was perfect weather to be outside and the farm was a great time.  Grace really got into finding good strawberries, picking them, and putting them in her basket.  By the end, she had strawberry juice all over her clothes and face.

I’m so far behind on posting pictures to our flickr sight that it completely overwhelms me.  I’m trying to upload a bit at a time.  HOPEFULLY by the end of the week I’ll be caught up.  At that point, I’ll post pictures from our fun weekend.  Sorry to do so many posts with no pictures!!

We’re Moving…

March 5, 2009

Did you think I meant to another house?? Gotcha! We’re actually moving blog addresses.

From now on, check us out at It’s way cooler and Matt was able to import all our posts from this blog to that one.

See you there!!

Chunky Monkey Indeed!

March 4, 2009

Super Excited about food
Originally uploaded by The Flener Family

Alyssa has been “healthy” since the day she was born – 8 lbs. 6 oz. and 2 weeks early! Glad she wasn’t late!

Once she started crawling, we boasted that she’d lost a little chubbiness and even had a neck! 🙂 Well, she better start walking soon or that neck will quickly disappear.

She now weighs 22 1/2 lbs. That is 1 lb. more than our friend, Claire, who is a year older than Alyssa. Yes, Claire is petite and has always been in the 5th percentile for weight, but still – it’s crazy!

The reason for this post is because of what she ate for lunch. We had our friends, the Embry’s, over for lunch today. The kids all sat outside at Grace and Alyssa’s new picnic table and we all enjoyed the 80 degree weather. I moved Alyssa’s booster seat outside too, so she could be with the big kids. Well, I guess I should say “older” because I think Alyssa is “bigger” than all of them.

Our baby ate more for lunch than all 3 of the older kids – COMBINED!! Grace had 2 servings of Mac-n-cheese and the Embry kids each had 1 serving. Well, Alyssa had 4 servings of mac-n-cheese, 2 spears of asparagus and 2 potato wedges. Can you believe it? No wonder she’s tipping the scales!!!

We’re going to have to put her on a fitness plan soon. 🙂

Jr. Asparagus

March 4, 2009

Grace loves Jr. Asparagus from Veggie Tales. However, we now have our very own Jr. Asparagus living right under our roof.

Her name is Alyssa and her new favorite veggie is asparagus. I’m not sure how many spears of asparagus she ate tonight for dinner (Matt and I were both feeding her), but she ate A LOT!

Move over spinach (her former fav veggie)…asparagus is the new love.