What? Yea, I couldn’t think of a title for this post so that is what you are stuck with. I hope you had a great Memorial Day weekend. And now a little trip down memory lane. The year after we graduated from college Chris and I moved to the amazingly wonderful nearly perfect state of Hawaii (yes, I miss it terribly). It was the opportunity of a lifetime and a cherished time for us during the post-college/pre-kids years. We worked with international students that attended the University of Hawaii. We made life long friends, sadly most of our closest friends from that time were from every corner of the globe so it makes it difficult to stay in touch. I could go on and on and on, but I won’t. Good times. Stinkin’ good times.

These girls taught me some amazing recipes…none of which I can still make, but they were amazing. The sweet lady (second on left) would randomly drop of packages of bite size chocolate chip cookies at our apartment. She took good care of us.

The funny thing about this picture is it reminds me of an arguement my brother-in-law (at that time he was just my sister’s boyfriend) and I got into. We were on this hike and I was getting winded and made a comment about how it was easier for him because I take 2 steps for every one of his. We got into a big debate over that….and that is what I remember from this hike. Love you Eric….thanks for giving me a neice….and helping with my garden.

I can’t tell you how much I love this family. When they went to the hospital for the birth of their second daughter, their oldest daughter stayed with us for a few days. Chris and I had no experience with kids and she didn’t really speak much english. It was day two before we realized she was hungry for rice…we hadn’t made any and she was used to it several times a day! Our time with her made us realize we were ready to leap into the possiblity of starting a family.

Some of our other dear friends were another married couple, Travis & Sarah.

Here is Travis & Sarah now…with their two cuties.Travis and Sarah are in the process of expanding their family through the beautiful journey of adoption. Sarah recently emailed me about an super cool organization they came across that helps famlies raise money to fund adoptions. The organization is called Just Love Coffee. The basic idea is that Fair Trade Coffee is purchased and proceeds go to help orphans and their forever families. If you are in the process of adopting, you should check them out. If you would like to help with orphan care, buy some coffee. If you want to help a family in the process of adopting, but don’t know one….buy some coffee to help Travis & Sarah’s bring their little boy Levi home. If you aren’t a coffee drinker, buy some for someone else. We have friends that just adopted from Ethiopia…so we bought some for them….if you have kids, use this as a way to teach them about international orphan care and adoption.

And now to the quilting portion of this post….meet the Fullingims. They are our very dear friends. They are in the final stages of bringing home their 3 sweet kids from Swaziland.

One of my blog readers told me about a trip she is going on to Swaziland in September. Her group is trying to gather 40 quilts to take for the children they will be working with. 40…that is barely anything considering the amount of you that read this that own a sewing machine. So…grab some fabric and get quilting. If you have kids, let your kids be involved too. They can pick out the fabric, help come up with a pattern, and depending on their age can help sew. Click here for more info.

If you are super cool you could drink coffee while quilting with flea market find vintage fabric….and a doily.

The PhotoAccountant Solution giveaway ends tonight…scroll down to enter.

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  • Yanet - I love your stories. Thanks for the info on the places to get involved.

  • the inadvertent farmer - Great times…young and childless in Hawaii, wow! We love Hawaii too, we’re going again in a few months. If it doesn’t start warming up here in Washington I’m not coming home!

    Thanks for the information about getting involved…hmmm, a quilt might be fun! Kim

  • Esther Nelson - You have no idea what an amazing blessing this is! Thank you so much for doing this post. What a beautiful family the Fullingims are!

  • Lynda Hetrick - Wow, thank you for sharing about Hopealive2010.com. I am sitting here with tears in my eyes as I see all these things being knit together by the Almighty. I was born and raised a missionary kid in Swaziland, so to see the work taking place in this desperate nation, touches my heart in a deep way. By chance that we have a ministry taking place in Swaziland and you have friends adopting from Swaziland, I think not!I would love to talk to your friends,the Fullingims, about adoption from Swaziland. I will return in September to Swaziland for a month, preparing for the team to arrive. Again, I can not say thank you enough!

  • rachel denbow - OH, Melissa Moon! Well, I know it’s something else now but I miss that girl. We played soccer and had a ton of classes together.

    This is a great post. I’ll see what I can do about something quilted…

  • Anna Joy - Thank you for this post! I would love to get something quilted!

  • Kellie Ann - Love your blog! I don’t usually comment but I want to say this post not only incorporates awesome photos but worthwhile causes. I just bought 2 bags of Espresso to help your friends bring home their little boy :)

  • Shannon - Oh what a fun time y’all were able to have! Sometimes I regret that we weren’t able to have many adventures before children, but such is the life of college students! And I never regret having my kids!

    I think I have some fabric I could round up into a quilt…once I get past a craft fair and I am doing and some camping with the young women from my church.

  • Rachel Saul - I am part of the Swaziland mission trip. Thanks SO much for your wonderful mention. Thank you :)

  • Haven Rector - Thank you so much for this post!! I will also be returning to Swaziland with HopeAlive and cannot tell you how much this post means!

  • robyn - your stories are always so humanitarian. inspires me to get more involved!

  • chantelle - loved the trip down memory lane! took me back to Thailand pre-kid era! I am a big supporter of adoption so will go buy some coffee for summer pool side iced coffees right now!

  • Elizabeth Ludlam - Sowbona! It is amazing to see God working in the lives of many for one purpose…to bring HIS Hope to the country of Swaziland. PS. I LOVE your blog!

  • meg duerksen - this post was great.
    it has my mind going with ways to help. i wanted to make a quilt…maybe i can for them!

  • lifeologia - How cool… living in Hawaii – you guys always knew how to do it right! 😉
    Lovely info about the quilts.

  • carrie elliott - I LOVED your post. We are currently living in Hawaii, with our 2 adopted Swazi kiddos. It is fun to see the pictures of old Hawaii:) Your husband Chris actually connected Melanie and myself and I was able to be in Swazi with her over the holidays. How’s that for a quilt of lives coming together? I am BEYOND EXCITED that Melanie is there and will be bringing those sweet children home. Only wish I were in OK to fill the house full of balloons :) The look on Moses’ face would be priceless :) Sending the quilting link to a friend who just returned from Uganda and made over 300 pillowcase dresses for the kids there (thanks to one of your past links).
    Wouldn’t it be fun to see it all from God’s perspective and the true quilt of lives coming together to touch others through a simple blog! Thanks for you ministry to those of us all over the world.

    PS I can put some spam musubi in the mail for you!

  • emily anderson - love this post :)

  • Rhonda - I’ve been following your blog for a couple weeks now – wish I was close enough to participate in one of your SnapShops, but for now just learn from your posts.
    It’s so great to see people adopting from and working in Swaziland. My parents live there and work in radio, but have told me about all the orphans there. I’ll try and get a quilt put together for the group.

  • Amanda Fuentes - Great opportunities here!

    Love the Hawaii pics, it was trip down memory lane for me as well. We lived there for 3 years and my 2nd daughter was born there in the pink Army hospital on the hill! :)

  • boogie. - i love that font as much as i love the pictures!!! so great!

  • Lisa - I didn’t know you lived in Hawaii for a length of time. I miss living there, too! AWESOME WEATHER and GREAT FRIENDS!
    You’re photos took me down memory lane, thanks!

  • Sarah - Thanks, Ashley, for posting this. We really appreciate you and this amazing little blog!

I would like to introduce you to the Jones family.  We are so thrilled to have met them this year through our son’s school. Mrs. Jones is the prinicipal and we worked out a little trade. She wanted the family pictures and I wanted to guarantee that Biggest Brother gets straight As and nothing on his discipline records. We traded.

No, we didn’t trade, there is a lot more to the story than that. I might have to try a trade in the future though!  She does a tremendous job as principal and we truly feel like the school is extended family. It was an amazing experience for us. Thank you Mrs. Jones.

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  • Liene - Beautiful pictures of a lovely family!

  • rachel denbow - what beautiful girls they have! And I know the frame idea isn’t new to the scene but I love how mom and dad are holding it in front of their kids. Lovely!

  • beth - Great photos! What size frame are you using for that photo of the sisters?

  • meg duerksen - love it.
    giving me so many ideas…thank you.
    i felt in a rut. :)
    happy to have new ideas.
    happy day today.

  • Katie - The girls have gorgeous eyes!! Love the frame picture!

  • Carola - Hi!! I´m from BRasil and i´m not so good in english. but i´m completely in love for your blog!!


  • Heather - ooh! they are all so lovely (i adore that they all wore jeans), but really, really love the frame one. what a clever idea! i might have to try that one out with my little ones.

  • Jeanie - Great photos!
    I used to know this family 10 years ago when we lived in OK, they are as lovely on the inside as they are on the outside. What fun to see their beautiful girls all grown up!

  • The Lady of the House - I love these pics! What a cute family. You are so talented my dear.

  • Brooke - I love these pictures…..adorable :) I love the frame pic too..

  • bambooska - What a beautiful family. You’re so talented!

If they are eating anywhere but the table, they have to stand up…otherwise their food is considered fair game to her.

“Dear God, thank you for giving me two little brothers that are silly and make me laugh.

Thank you for giving me a little sister that is tough and doesn’t even cry when we step on her hands. Amen.” Biggest Brother, 6.

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  • kristiina - What a lucky little girl! The boys are lucky, too 😉

  • Corey Moortgat - Your photos look like my house around here. My 9 month old daughter has two older brothers as well. I’ve got so many cute girl toys for her, yet she goes for the monster trucks and hotwheels since that’s what her brothers are playing with! I guess it’s inevitable, although I sure hope she finds her girly side eventually- I need a playmate,too!

  • raychel - ADORABLE pictures. You have beautiful children! I am an only girl with 6 brothers, and had a blast growing up! Seeing these pictures makes me think back to my childhood so much! Your daughter will grow up to be one tough cookie!!

  • Alba - Amen! whenever you have finised the Biggest Brother Bible, please, send me a copy!

  • bopha - i love it, i can’t wait for our little girl to get loved on by her big brothers. Lincoln is already so excited, he wants to hug every little baby girl that he sees.

  • Shannon - What a sweet post. As always Little Sister is deliciously adorable! I love sibling love, it makes me so happy, to see the carefree love of children for one another! Very precious!

  • Tess S. - biggest brother just made this momma cry. not hard.. considering this pregnancy makes me cry over everything.

    my sweet little boy will be 2 in september and only says 3 or 4 words. last night for the first time after saying grace before dinner he said “amen” and again after prayers before bed time. that’s the stuff that makes your heart melt.

  • keely - What a great post! I especially love the picture of her and biggest brother- great expressions!

  • karen davis - such a fun post!! Love all the photos, and especially love big brother’s prayer!

  • Erin - I love this post!!! I am cracking up at the Spiderman mask, that is awesome…

  • Anna Joy - That is soooo precious, cute, awesome, amazing! And Biggest Bro’s prayer is awesome. Your family is too cool

  • Sarah - adorable pics! your kids are so lucky to have each other!

  • haley - I cant hyper link this for some reason… Little sister needs to have these!!! have you seen them yet! there are limited edition Demin diapers in stores June and July-we have them already in WI!!!


  • Yuliana - Great pictures, you captured the best moments.
    Your children are adorable!

  • Cate O'Malley - oh my gosh, nearly too cute for words – love them all!

  • Jamie - I love this post! My favorite part was the very last picture and Big Brother’s prayer. Just too cute.

  • Tracie - So cute! My son spent a lot of time in his big sister’s purple dress up dress. It’s cool that the typical boy/ girl boundaries are crossed when you have some of each!

  • Susanne - AMEN!

  • amanda torres - Boys are beyond special…and dirty…and well, just boys. But girls, they melt your heart. You’re very blessed to have such a brood of boys, and a sweet chunk of a girl.

  • anne c - you have the cutest kids in the world ashley! I wish I could be a fly on the wall at your house everyday! so fun!

  • rachel denbow - Ashley you’ve caught some incredibly tender, fantastic moments here. Those boys obviously know how to love on their little sister. And I’m happy to know I wasn’t the only one who snatched up that little denim jumper at Wal-Mart. (and the pink one, too!) Sometimes they surprise me over there!

    Now I want two more kids, like stat. (wait a minute….lets think about this)

  • Seamingly Sarah - You are making my womb ache for more babies. I’ll tell my husband to blame you and your adorable children.

  • the inadvertent farmer - Hope she never plans on dating…my daughter’s three older brothers have already told her not dating till 30.

    They were deadly serious!!! Kim

  • julia - my heart? it just melted!

  • Tweets that mention growing up with big brothers » ashleyannphotography.com -- Topsy.com - […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Raquel Gomes, Marília Sampaio . Marília Sampaio said: Eu tb! RT @AninhaMedeiros: Queria ter quatro filhos, um logo apos o outro, queria sim… http://ow.ly/1RauO […]

  • Heather - love this! what a lucky little girl to have so many boys to love her. my daughter (who has that same dress. i heart walmart baby dresses!) runs around the house with a bakugan in one hand and a naked dolly in the other. life is good!

  • lifeologia - These photos are so much fun. I love the Spider Baby!
    She is one lucky girl to have such great brothers to always protect her 😉

  • Martina - Aw, this post was so sweet! She’s a very blessed little girl to have 3 cool big brothers. I pity the guy she falls in love with some day … :) And biggest brother’s prayer is so sweet and sincere!

  • Michelle W - Ash, Your kids are simply adorable. You have so many great photos of them. Do you scrapbook the photos? So many photos…so little time?

  • Kimber - your little girl is adorable! and so are these pictures! i grew up with 4 older brothers and these pictures remind me so much of what i went through! goodness! i found your blog a few weeks ago and am now shamefully obsessed with all your pics and adorable DIY! thanks fo sharing everyday, i’m so excited everytime you do!

  • Katie H. - I am going to have to agree with the previous comments about her not being able to date with those big brothers around.

    You may not know this Ashley, but my first ever formal dance “sophmore semi-formal” I went with Chris, because I didn’t like the other options Robert had for me.

  • Tonia - I’m sorry, but denim diapers?! Big brother’s underwear on her head is far cutier than a denim diaper would be!

  • Grace - Cute kids! Love the one where big brother is putting underwear on her head! :) hehe

  • natalie - What a great set of photos. Truly captures the everyday life with your kids.

  • Jane - Awwww….so sweet.

  • bambooska - I just cannot stop laughing at this post. Bahahahahahahahahahaha…

  • chantelle - still laughing! baby sister-you are lthe lucki-est liltle girl ever!

  • MelissaM - LOVVVVVE IT!!!!!!!

  • Kerry - this is the best post EVER!!!
    i love how caring they are towards their little sister(:

  • Libby - i love this post. too sweet! and your pictures— gorgeous!!

  • robyn - i love these sibling pictures…….. i have trouble getting great shots of mine together.
    thanks for sharing!

  • Ingrid - LOVE this post!

  • emily - Oh my goodness, that is the cutest thing ever. With a family with three big brother and one baby sister, I can totally relate! Love the picture of baby getting underpants put on her head!

  • sperlygirl - just found you via crescendoh.com. wonderful photos – and this post today touched my heart. being an only child i longed for this and now a mama of 2 boys i can relate a bit. beautiful!

  • Lexi - Hi! Love you site and beautiful photos! I got to your site from my etsy traffic sources! Just wondering if you know how people got to my site from yours? Thanks!! :)

  • georgia - She is so adorable.

  • 8ght - i love your kids!

  • Melissa-Jade - Oh – that almost makes me wish i had had older brothers. Very very sweet spidey mask on her! I dont think my hubby’s sisters got off quite that easily…so lucky girl! Long may those sweet relationships last.

  • Ang - Sweet Baby Sister . . . I can’t wait to meet you!

  • Ari Morris - Ashley,
    How in the world do you get your pictures so crystal clear??? I know you are mega talented of course…but…? That picture of Breece getting the underware placed on her head is amazing! I want to take pictures like that!!!

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