It’s the most wonderful time of the year

Facebook memories reminded me this morning of the year that I attempted to post pictures every day of December. I thought I’d give it a try again.

Just a little festive happenings at the Horne house. I debated starting with the huge pile of food I swept up since Elliot is eating finger food now. That is boring, but my life. So don’t let these pictures deceive you into thinking that my house is always clean and decorated:) FullSizeRenderIMG_1722




And a little beauty from Downtown Wyoming in the Winter.

Merry Christmas and Happy December!!!


Princess(We are on a princess kick after we got to see some of them at Jump Craze on Monday)

This morning the kids and I were snuggling on the couch watching Disney Jr.’s Princess Sophia. Sophia was getting to sing a song for a bunch of people and it was a really big deal. She was bragging to her friends about it and then all of a sudden she had a frog in her throat. (Just to clarify, the show is for children so she had a literal croak coming from her throat.) It would of course be very difficult to sing in that condition so she went to see what was wrong.

She discovered she had been cursed for doing something wrong.

Her solution was to discover what she had done wrong and say sorry so that the curse would be broken and she would get to sing like she wanted.

I refer to these as “band-aide apologies”. I am going to say sorry without feeling any regret, without true repentance because it will make you feel good and everything will be better for me.

That didn’t solve the problem so in the end she does her good dead and lets her friends sing instead of her. And she got her voice back… Happily Ever After…

I was thinking about the Last Supper and Maundy Thursday and then I was bombarded by band-aide apologies and good deeds. Jesus said here is my body and here is my blood that I give for you.

If He would have said, “Here is how to give a band-aide apology and do a good deed like me and the curse of sin will be broken.” then he could have returned to heaven without the whole cross part in between.

Sophia was right about the curse. It began in the garden with Adam and Eve and was passed on to all of human kind. But the curse has been broken! Not with good deeds and saying sorry, but with the blood of Jesus, 100% God and 100% man. He was perfect so He was able, He became man so that he was like us in humanity, and He was willing to die to redeem us. The curse in not a froggy throat. It is separation from God, and Jesus came and died to pay for our sin and bring us into relationship with God.

Everything will not be “Happily Ever After” with a band-aide apology and a nice gesture. The happily even after is by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ and His death and His death and resurrection.

The Curse of sin is Broken!
May God be glorified the Maundy Thursday.


The First Month


1 monthHow is it that the last month of pregnancy feels like six months and the first month of baby’s life goes by in a flash?

1monthMicah and Julia are captivated with our little man! Julia is still telling me that she is “so excited” that he is out of my belly:) Her vocabulary brings us daily giggles. I think she is stepping up her comedy to fight the middle child syndrome. IMG_0097This month has been crazy with adjusting to “staying awake a lot” as Matt fondly calls it, Julia and Micah having the stomach flu, getting snowed in, and getting Matt ready to fly to Uganda on Monday.

It has been wonderful to have so much help, and I was ready for the transition from 2 to 3 to rock our world. There are more “mom help”s, more diapers, more mess and less quiet, but in some ways it has been easier than the transition from 1 to 2. Micah and Julia can play together while Elliot is nursing, I have fully embraced the beauty of Netflix, Micah has been a huge help since he is older, and as I am writing this I realized our transition from 1 to 2 was in Uganda and the conveniences of America have made more of a difference than I thought. I love mac-n-cheese and chicken nuggets that are ready in 1-1 1/2 minutes.

playdohWe have played with Playdoh A LOT! And stayed in our jammies on these cold winter days. We have survived and that was my goal for this first month!

JamberryMy biggest advice for new moms… do your nails! I have my super cute new bangs pinned back, haven’t brushed my hair, have no make-up on, most of my clothes don’t fit right, but as I watch myself change the 15th diaper of the day or get the 17th sippycup I fully enjoy the little bit of fun and beauty and I for a second feel like I have it together:)

Now I know why half of my mom friends are selling Jamberry!

Happy weekend!


Not in Uganda Anymore

It has been one week since landed in America and I still find myself and my family thinking or doing things and then we remember we are not in Uganda anymore. One of the most important are my constant reminders to Matt while driving which lane he should be in (I’m sure he is really appreciating it)… more than once I thought he pulled out into oncoming traffic only to realize Americans drive on the “right” side of the road (no pun intended)

There is a dark spot on my in-laws hardwood floors that Julia keeps returning to.. sure that it is a bug. At first it was an ant but since we have assured her it is not an ant, it has turned into a cockroach. Sorry girl, those bugs don’t survive in these Wyoming temperatures.

Yesterday I got my blood drawn which is one of my favorite things in the whole world! ha ha! While the nurse was getting ready and then penetrating my bubble with a sharp needle, Matt was kindly distracting me with all of the Ugandan annoyances that we didn’t have to go through to get to the doctor. As the nurse was turning viles of my blood back and forth in her hands, I saw a wave of fear cross her face. “Uganda wasn’t one of the places infected with Ebola… RIGHT?!” As much as I wanted to see how far I could push her… I didn’t want to end up in quarantine. Note to self… Don’t tell American medical staff that you have just returned from Africa.

When the sun goes down that does not mean it is time for bed. When it gets dark in Uganda at 7pm (+/- 10 minutes) all year long we start putting the kids to bed and winding down for the night. Unfortunately 5:30 betimes make for very early mornings!

I went Black Friday shopping … and there was no security guard to make sure that my belly is not a bomb… and I didn’t pay with cash… and the options were a bit overwhelming.

Julia has worn fleece footie pajamas for the first time in her life.

Micah cried when his hands started burning from being so cold in the snow.

Micah told me it was thundering… nope that is wind.

We ate pizza twice in one day.

I heard a 90’s boy band on the radio and it made me think of Uganda.

Micah tried to walk to the car without shoes on… and then began yelling at me to hold him.

We are so glad to be in America but still not completely used to being here. Some of it has been quite comical… the joys of thousands of miles and 10 time zones.




Family Friday

It is raining here today and water is getting in the front door where the dog broke the glass out this morning. We are praising God no one got hurt! I had just picked Julia up after she waved goodbye and before Matt got to the gate, Platte slammed into the door shattering the glass. I put my foot up as if I could shield us from the flying pieces. My foot was cut in the process, but that could have been Julia standing in only her diaper getting hit with flying glass.

A crazy end to a pretty normal week!

baby and ju Lots of playing outside, making the most of the sun!

coloringWe have been loving coloring! This day we were making thank yous for the Veterans.

hiding Ju and Dad Julia Boda julia journal Micah Stick siblings


cold Micah

This one is my favorite… So my kids think that this is the kind of jacket they need to wear when they feel “cold”. Casper was -25 one morning this week and my kids think pool toys will keep them warm. They are in for a surprise!

10 sleeps!

Fall Fun Ideas For Toddlers


Micah and I made a chain to count down days until we come home! We put fun fall activities on them to give us some fun things to look forward to as we wait for the days to pass. We thought we would share some of the fun for you to enjoy too!

Fall fun idea

-Play with play dough and make fall shapes
-Read Where is Babies Pumpkin and/or play hide and seek with a pumpkin
-Paint a Pumpkin
-Make caramel and eat it with apples

Fall Fun Ideas







-Read Froggy’s Halloween and/or play dress up
-Draw a thankful tree and add something to it each day in November
-Make a leaf crown

Fall Fun Ideas





-Make Sugar cookies
-Frost Sugar cookies
-Practice colors with leaves

Fall colors






Make Lego stamped corn


lego corn

– Go on a nature walk and collect leaves
– Make a leafy jack-o-lantern

Fall Fun Ideas







– Go on a turkey hunt
– Count leaves
– Read the story of the pilgrims
– Sensory play in popcorn and beans
-Make hand print turkeys

And can you believe it has been 6 weeks since the last 6 week goals!
How did you do?

I met most of mine but the quilt is not coming very quickly and I have a few chapters left in 2 Chronicles. I “finished” memorizing Ephesians this month although I have been going back to review and definitely slacked on that in the first few months I was pregnant. I read this week that David Platt had the entire New Testament memorized by the time he was 36! Wow what a great thing to work towards. I would have to memorize 2 chapters every 6 weeks to finish when I’m 36.

Here are my goals for the next 6 weeks: 4 in Uganda and 2 in Wyoming:)
Memorize– John 1 (&2)
Study– start Ephesians with Lexi using the “P method”
*If you are looking for a great book on studying the Bible I would highly recommend Women of the Word by Jen Wilkin
ReadOrdinary by Michael Horton and You and Me Forever by Francis Chan
Christmas– Order Christmas Cards and make a Christmas list of presents to buy
Kids– Fall Fun Ideas, make an advent list and start with What God Wants for Christmas on Dec 1

What are you planning for the next 6 weeks? Any fun fall ideas?

Have you Ever Seen A Python Eat a Chicken?

We have!

Pythons get fed about twice a month and when we were at the zoo, at the python cage, it happened to be the exact time they were feeding them, and we got to watch a python eat a whole chicken!
It was the most amazing, most disturbing thing I have ever seen.
It was hiding under a rock to eat its meal so it was difficult to get pictures, but I thought this was too cool not to share!

Python eating a chicken

This is the chicken. See the leg?

Then the Python used his body to shove the entire chicken into his mouth!

Python eating a chicken

It about made me gag.
We just couldn’t believe that in the middle of the day on a Saturday they would feed the Pythons. Don’t they close the exhibit to do this at most zoos? We have been a little bit amazed every time we go to the Entebbe zoo. Seeing an elephant being led around the walking paths or a loose camel just isn’t the norm as far as our zoo experiences go.

Python eating a chicken

And that is his fat neck as he starts to digest his chicken dinner… WOW!

The Entebbe zoo only has animals that are in Uganda so its fun to get to see some things that we don’t see on a regular basis but are native to the area. The kids love it and we had some friends come from Kampala to hang out with us for the day.

day at the zoo
Python eating a chicken
Julia at the zoo
monkeys at the zoo
Sorry if I ruined your appetite!
Have you seen any cool animals feasting like a python on a chicken?

My House is on Fire!

My house is on fire

I think the boring days as a mother can be worse than the crazy ones. It is on those days that I wish I had a play date to have some mom talk. Hear about some good books, recipes, mom tips, or just a good story. To be encouraged and encourage others.
I have finally discovered that is why I like about blogging and reading blogs. It is a virtual play date. Not that it can take the place of spending time face to face.
On a boring day I love to hear a funny story. Comic relief can be the best encouragement…
Last night Matt was having Bible study with Abdallah and so I decided to turn on Mom’s Night Out for some good comic relief:)
If you haven’t seen it, I can’t sing its praises enough! It is well done, has a great story line, the characters are perfect, and it lacks the regular Christian movie cheese.
So I went to bed with the lines, I am a mess, a beautiful mess, a good chuckle, and the thought that no matter how crazy my day is, someone else had a crazier one….
And then I awoke to my own craziness. I snuck past the kids watching a movie, to get to the kitchen for a cup of coffee, before they saw me and needed something, but Julia jerked and saw me. Needing cuddles, and more juice, and wanting “more cookie”
?? cookies, dad really before breakfast… oh well…. coffee, got to get coffee.
We sat down and I snuggled my sweet girl while getting my first taste of delicious coffee.
I grabbed the ipad and saw my mom messaged me,”Call me….”
6:38… ok its not 10pm there yet. Lets call JaJa!
I got to talk to Kristy and heard my mom talking to someone on the phone in the background. Jordan was on the phone too… got to say a quick phone to ipad through the tango call hello.
Which is when Micah obviously realized I was awake and he got up on the wrong side of the bed or something because nothing could make him happy. My talk with my mom was cut short because of screaming children.
He was hungry… also for more cookies, but breakfast would do so I put baked oatmeal in the oven, got them situated with the movie and sat down for some quiet time. 2 Kings 22:1-2 Josiah was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned thirty-one years in Jerusalem, His mother’s name was Jedidah the daughter of Adaiah of Bozkath. And he did what was right in the eyes of the Lord and walked in all he way of David his father, and he did not turn to the right or to the left. 
Well his dad was one bad dude, so I wondered who this mother of the 8 year old king that was like none before or after him. These are the women that we should look up to!
But Micah was screaming for breakfast so I got it out of the oven and fed the family.
We were out of milk and eggs so after breakfast Matt took Julia and ran to the store before work. What a guy:)
Micah wanted to finger paint so I took advantage of Julia being gone and got out the paint and paper… only she got home before we were done and was in the paint before I had anything to say about it.
By the end, the paint was gone, and they were both a mess so I stuck them both in the bath.
Which was fine…
I was getting them dressed when I came out to the kitchen for something… what was it… OH WOW!
So I had lit the pumpkin spice candle only now it had a huge flame all around the top of the glass, almost burning the fall flowers next to it. I went to blow it out, only it EXPLODED! The glass shattered sending the fire out engulfing the table runner! (I took this picture last week because I was going to write about the amazing pumpkin pie granola but didn’t get around to it:) how ironic that the give thanks is literally what lit on fire)

My house is on fire

The children were still in the back of the house so I ran back to get them out of the house before it spread. I was scared to be anywhere near it so I ran to the back door which of course had to be unlocked and ran out the door screaming for my neighbors.
They ran over while I was still screaming that the house was on fire. Ok, a bit of an exaggeration. But to a pregnant mom with a one year old, a two year old, and a fire….
They helped me put it out. Praise the Lord not too much damage was done. Micah was excited because he saw a real fire and it got put out, so we were basically like firefighters! He was impressed! Juila not so much… she clung to me for over an hour trying to figure out if life was safe again.

My house is on fire

Our neighbors were a God send! They are leaving tomorrow for two months for South Sudan. I’m so glad it happened today. They are with AIM and have looked at the few unreached places in Africa which are very remote and are working on getting facilities for missionaries to move in and evangelize the people. They go to the church that we have been going to in Entebbe. Praise God for the Church and pray for them as they leave tomorrow. They live in a tent while they are there overseeing the building.
I got the kids more cookies for a snack but realized the bag was full of ants… Oh I’m so glad I spent nap time yesterday making cookies only for the ants to enjoy most of them. ANTS might be the death of me… they are seriously taking over… and making me crazzy!
In case you are wondering… Magic eraser will take wax off the wall and the laminate floor!
I started cleaning up the mess and I thought I should clean our guest bedroom and bathroom, while I was at it since we have an intern moving in with us tonight.
I told Matt last night that it smelled like something had died back there and asked him to check it out, he must have forgotten because it still stunk… decomposing cockroach in the bath drain… that would do it.
I left it for Matt to get… I’ll clean later and besides it was time for lunch.
I was almost finished with lunch when Julia came in from outside crying which was perfect timing for me to walk out side since Micah was walking around the raised edge of our house with the knife the guard had left out….”Look mom, Its not that sharp.”
AHH are you kidding me… yes it is sharp.
Just a little ketchup in Julia’s hair during lunch but then we made it to nap time.
I made myself a cup of tea and sat down to tell you a funny story because my day has not been boring today but tomorrow it probably will be and I hope you have a story to make me laugh then:)

My house is on fire

This is what the Church is for to help each other put out fires and encourage each other with a laugh. And maybe a few other things too. I wonder if Jedidah had some crazy days along with the boring ones because her son made a great king who followed God. May our children do what is right in the eyes of the Lord and not turn to the right or the left even if they run with knives and run out of the house screaming from fire. Yes, I am a beautiful mess!

Just A Few Weekend Funnies


We had a great weekend in Mbale with our friends who we are greatly missing! Matt worked on the clinic site on Saturday and had the opportunity to stay for the 15 year celebration of Hines Ugandan Ministries. Luckily his car was parked under the same tree as the celebration was taking place so he was offered a seat of honor. And of course was offered a huge 2nd lunch:)
The kids and I had a great lunch and time to catch up with some friends. Micah was “helping” some of the kids wash the car and learned a lesson in “it takes a village to raise a child.” He was given a swat on the hand for pouring water in the exhaust pipe… Lessons were learned by all:)
I got to play bunco with the ladies! It was some much needed girl time!
The traffic there and back wasn’t even too bad. Although we did get stuck in what could have been quite the traffic jam. When road construction happens in Uganda causing the lanes of traffic to go down to a single lane, all chaos breaks loose. Let me remind you this is the one main road from Jinja into Kampala (like a major interstate coming into a big city) So while traffic is stopped by the flag man waiting for traffic to come from the other way, it is a free for all push and shove to see who can get closest to the front of the line to go again. It is always crazy and usually the traffic coming the other way gets involved….


Our air conditioning doesn’t work great while sitting in traffic so on the curvy roads after the hot construction stop, Julia lost her lunch, and breakfast, and dinner, we had a huge mess. We all got a laugh and kept on our way with the windows rolled down!image2


And Micah loves to use the time in the car to practice his photography skills so I get to delete hundreds of these any time we arrive at a destination:)

Hope you had a great weekend! Happy Monday