Thursday, November 22, 2012

Another Ranch Thanksgiving...we are thankful!!!

Happy Thanksgiving! So many things to be thankful for, including another blog! I can't help but share this wonderful day with all of you. I am sitting in a quiet, peaceful room after a day of plenty! The food was abundant, the flowers were abundant, the people were abundant, the work was abundant, and the blessings were abundant. This was the first Thanksgiving at the ranch since Tony and I took over, and thanks to our AMAZING staff it was another beautiful Thanksgiving in the Rockies! I mean that...I first just want to share with you this kitchen staff that worked as a well oiled machine.  With thankfulness in their hearts and intermittent dance parties in the kitchen they fed 170 people and made it look easy! Introducing our kitchen crew first and foremost...

 I have to give a special shout out to Perrie and Anne! These two have baked and cooked for hundreds of thousands of guests and now it is their time to leave! It is so hard to invest so deeply in these relationships with our staff, they truly are our family, and there is always going to be a time they leave the ranch to go pursue bigger things! These two stepped into their positions as baker and head chef and it seemed seamless. Neither have had any formal training and just like so many of our crew leaders, however they had a passion to learn and high character to do it with excellence. They say that "the kitchen is the heart of the home," well that's true of our kitchen as well and these two girls have put heart in our kitchen. I love you two and you will never fully know how thankful we are for you! When we tackle a thanksgiving day on the ranch and our staff is still saying it didn't seem too hectic and they actually had a good time doing it...this is because of incredible leadership from these girls in charge. Thank you for being steadfast!

I had fun this year tying in a little bit more Christmas in the decor. We are going to do western entertainment and Christmas carols by the fire, so I thought a decorated mantle and tree would be appropriate. I tried to keep the Christmas more on the rustic, natural side so not to interfere with Thanksgiving.  Here are a few pictures...

I am thankful this year for a peace that surpasses understanding. I am thankful for my incredible husband who leads so faithfully and our four children who are full of joy and life. I am thankful for the Word of God and the power it has in our lives. I am thankful for prayer and the healing I have seen it bring into dear friends' lives. I am thankful for people...all people and the fulfillment of relationships here on earth. To quote my husband, "I am thankful for the eternal which gives purpose to the temporal." Happy Thanksgiving 2012!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Yes...It's me!

My last post is dated April 28th, 2012...I know, I know...I'm glad this blog is not a business or I would be bankrupt! This blog was created so that you might experience my unique lifestyle and my family and friends will feel updated better. Isn't blogging kind of like exercise...the less you do it, the less you want to do it?  What has been happening the last few months, well here goes...

Anna Kate Warnock was born May 24, 2012* We became a family of 6*We took over Lost Valley Ranch* the last 3 months we have been running our busy summer schedule*We had Christmas in July for our staff*My sister and her 4 kids came to stay for a week*Becca started Kindergarten*Will started preschool* I will still homeschool 3 days a week*I had to order and pick out curriculum*last spring, we moved*we watched hours of the Olympics*and after a complete renovation of our lobby, we have started planning renovations for some of our cabins*I have NOT managed to potty train my almost 3 year old and I have NOT been blogging!

The "Visuals"...
Anna Kate is now 3 months old and has been an incredible joy! And, yes those cheeks just keep getting chubbier.

Becca is now officially in Kindergarten! She is enrolled in The Cottage School, so we drive an hour and a half just 2 afternoons a week. It is a school for home schooled kids. They participate in activities such as P.E., art, music, Spanish, and get to have recess. Let's face it, I have no musical ability and I sure don't speak Spanish.

We are homeschooling on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. I am using Sonlight curriculum and loving it! The younger brothers so far are just as involved as their big sister. 

We had an entire week with my sister's family and then had my 2 nieces stay an extra week after my sister had left. It was a ball! 

I can't keep this baby girl from growing...I am just trying to soak up every second with her! I am disappointed in myself, however my family will always come first, the people on this ranch will come next, and this blog takes it's appointed place...this is my attempt to "try again" and with one hand holding my sweet blessing and the other one more successful post complete!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Will James is 4!!!!!!!

   William James Warnock was born on April 28th, 2008 and I will never forget it. After 6 weeks in the hospital on bed rest, he made his appearance only to go straight to the NICU and then released to go home a week later only to be on oxygen for the next THREE months. Let's just say, my adjustment from 1 to 2 kids was not the smoothest. It certainly was a dark time. However, he has taught us as parents more than we ever imagined and he is growing into a tender-hearted, could never imagine my life without him, lovable, and energetic boy. 
    Well, the ranch did not have any guests coming in until 4:00 pm on the Friday before his birthday, so what else are you going to do...have the best Nerf gun fight imaginable for a 4 year old. We turned our entire back lawn into a battle field (or I should say Jeff actually did it for me.)  We woke up that morning and I intentionally deceived this 3 almost 4 year old into thinking that his birthday was that day. I'm just too pregnant to drag out his birthday for more than a day. So, we usually celebrate as a family in the morning, since breakfast is the best way to have uninterrupted time together and open presents they can play with all day. I made my little monkey "monkey bread" and we enjoyed our morning deceptively celebrating his "real" birthday. 

We then headed outside to play with new toys before our picnic. We ate hot dogs, ate Buzz Lightyear cake (made by our 4 diamond pastry chef, Perrie), and then headed to the battle field.

Let the games begin...

 I think this will probably be our last family picture of 5 Warnocks. Unbelievable!!!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter and OOOO-AAAAH!

It's always interesting for me to try to combine my suburban southern-girl roots and this ranch life on an occasion such as Easter. The buffet table this year is a perfect picture of it. I desperately want to include the traditional and fabulous stargaze lilies, but I must include the 3 foot cowboy as well. My little girl is another  perfect example, I am intentional about finding a very sweet and southern Easter ensemble, but her cowgirl boots will be worn on her feet.  

We had another successful and memorable Easter in the valley and I could not be more thankful for the reason to have a weekend of ropin', ridin', and egg hunting. I love that my life is just not normal. Happy Easter to my followers who endearingly watch as I, the suburban girl, attempt to do this ranch life! 

We started the weekend's festivities with egg dyeing and cookie decorating...

After pancakes, my kiddos were able to enjoy the treasures in their Easter baskets...

On to the egg hunt...

 Our dear ranch family...

Here was the best part of the day...Jack collected more Nerf bullets and rocks than eggs!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The birth of...

  It is spring here at the ranch! And with this season that represents birth and regrowth, we have our own here at the ranch. I had told you that I have been working on some big projects. Our new lobby is one of them and I'm ready to show you some of the updates. We just got the first shipment of furniture so it is starting to resemble a usable space. I am so excited about this new chapter at the ranch and this lobby is such a reflection of that. Change is hard but necessary and we are in the middle of the hard and necessary right now. So, for our present guests and hopefully, our future guests, here is a sneak peak.

For those of you that have a hard time with change, there are things that will never change about this place and here is a photo of something that will never change here at the life!

The ranch kids(and Heidi) just watched the
brand new foal all morning.