Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A Christmas Weekend

Christmas in Carney is always a fun time! I just love warm family traditions! A few highlights from going to see Jason's family include:

-ice skating up and down the creek! (Caed is getting some skating legs!)
-watching the boys follow the bigger girl cousins around
-cherry pie and ALL the huge platters of cookies!
-Elsie in her dress
-prayer time for the whole family
-the joy of children opening presents
-small meaningful conversations with individuals I love
-preaching on the prophecies of Christ from Isaiah
-watching the adult men spend hours playing legos
-being packed together in a small cabin sharing joy
-communion as an extended family at Christmas day service
-but of course, the highlight was Jonas' answer at the Moravian candlelight service during the children's sermon. The leader asked if anyone knew what frankincense was. Jonas piped up VERY loudly, "That's what they put on DEAD BODIES so they don't get STINKY!" That's my son!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Caedmon catch-up

Caedmon learned some new skills this summer. He enjoyed many more board games including Guess Who, Monopoly Jr. and more complex puzzles. He was very proud to learn to ride a 2-wheeler! He became very independent and agile! I enjoyed not pulling his 45 pounds in the trailer!

And, of course, he now picks out all his own clothes. Clearly.


I'm back! I think I can handle blogging once every 6 months. :-) In this season of Thanksgiving, I was reflecting on one of the tangible health blessings God has given us. It has been 2 years since Jonas was hospitalized twice for severe croup. We continue to deal with this problem almost monthly, but he has not had to be readmitted to the hospital since!

This last bout has been about 2 1/2 weeks of sleepless nights so far. Yet I praise God that my Jonas is still with us. You get such clarity of God's provision at 2 AM calming your child. You feel such heartfelt thanks for the health you usually enjoy. You are blessed by God's amazing strength to face the next day after a long night. You have powerful empathy for those who deal with chronic pain or illness. And you realize how fiercely you love your children. It is all grace.

We are thankful! Jonas has been an absolute delight in our lives and we couldn't ask for a more fun child!
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Tuesday, April 12, 2011


My Jonas turned 3! I can't believe it. Jonas is the perfect middle child! He is extremely laid back, especially for being in the terrible 2-3's. Still has the most contagious giggle, and knows how to use it. Jonas is not a fan of vegetables or most meat, but if you fill him with carbs and sugar he is happy! He enjoyed being the spotlight all day! For breakfast, birthday waffles and the cereal he picked: fruit loops! Jonas asked for a police car cake, so Jason and I did our best.
It was fun and delicious!
Unbeknownst to us, Aunt got him a police car, and Mormor got him a police officer's uniform!
Complete with handcuffs, whistle, ticket pad, and radio!

Jonas enjoyed going to McDonalds for lunch, then having a couple friends over for a party. Here is a blast from the past-April 5, 2008. The best friends meet for the first time!
We love your sweet spirit, Jonas, and can't wait to see what God has for you!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Spring spring! We celebrated St. Patrick's Day with the traditional color, good friends, a lesson on St. Patrick the missionary, and green eggs and cornbread! I have a lifelong goal to make good pie crusts. A person just isn't an accomplished baker until she masters pie. Jason encourages me to practice often! I made a superb lemon meringue pie with a flawless crust which was fun! (My record for good crusts is generally 1 out of 2)
It is time for the spring warm weather teasing. One beautiful day last week we got out the sun hats and played in the driveway-it was wonderful! Then today we got snow, sleet, rain, and hail.

Jonas loves to feed Elsie. Elsie loves to eat. It is a mutually beneficial relationship-like many parasites. :-) Happy Spring!

A Tale of a Couch

After a year of scouring craigslist daily, we finally we found a couch for our family room! $125 looked mighty good so we called immediately. The phone number didn't work, so Jason drove across town only to find it was a veterans' warehouse that had just closed.

I was not to give up so easily. Monday morning they were to open at 9:00. Caedmon had the flu and had fallen asleep downstairs on a flop-out in his pj's. I had decided I was going to get there when they opened, or not at all, so I hurridly woke up my sick son, dressed him, gave him a puke bowl to carry, and packed up. 3 kids in tow we arrived at this place at 9:05 where I sat in the comfortable couch, dashed to the front desk, and plopped down my money! Bless Caedmon's heart, he didn't throw up, but he didn't make it to the bathroom on the way back... They delivered it by noon and we were tickled!

THEN we smelled it. Like a sleazy motel, the couch was saturated with smoke and dog odor. Hmm. Not quite as good of a deal as we thought. However it fit well in the space and looked good. Then I took off the sheet covering the chaise lounge. The sheet was hiding a huge basketball-sized black gunky tar stain. Hmm. We took to cleaning it.

We vacuumed it.

We washed all the cushion covers.

We shampoo-vacuumed it.

We dusted it with baking soda.

We revacuumed it.

We rewashed the cushion covers.

We saturated it in vinegar and vacuumed it. Twice.

We shampooed it once more.

And VOILA! The smell is all but vanished! I am not so sure we came out ahead after all that electricity though, but we are very pleased, and the huge nasty stain came completely out!
It is a great couch for the boys' cars. :-)

Grandma approves!

Ta-DA! If you come to our house you don't have to sit on the floor anymore!!!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

spiritual temperature

What is God teaching me lately?

In several areas of my life I have become aware of a pretty big problem with pride. In some ways, realizing you're doing "well" in spiritual disciplines is an encouraging thing. I AM experiencing the blessings of many areas of my life going "well." However, what to do with the pride that I feel like I have it mastered, when clearly as Christians, we always have a long way to go?

I confess my pride, and subconsciously hope God doesn't have in mind to humble/humiliate me. Yet I know if He does, I deserve it! The other thing to check is my motives, am I always doing things out of a pure heart? Probably not. Even if I am doing well, I think sometimes this piety manifests itself into judging others for their shortcomings rather than loving them, which is clearly sinful.

Other tibits-our family enjoyed a relaxing weekend retreat with our mini church up north this past weekend. We had great conversations, great games, great hikes. That was special. We were challenged as a group to corporately SERVE more.

Our Sunday School is going through the trendy book "Radical" by David Platt. The main thesis is to give up the American Dream, all of it, for radical holiness and giving oneself away. We are just kind of starting it, but I look forward to lives being changed! So far we don't feel called to the mission field or to sell our house, but it is a possibility, certainly.

We finished the Jesus Bible Storybook with the boys again today. I just love the last entry of John's vision of heaven. Truly, if we all were eternity minded, life would be SO EASY! I find myself drawn to songs about heaven lately.

I am working on memorizing I Corinthians 15, but it is slow going. I am also enjoying the gospels right now and reading through Acts. Being convicted to share my faith more boldly, and am trying to reach out to other moms. I guess that's my spiritual temperature these days.

catching up-again

I feel like I'm in a crisis of blogging! What is the purpose of blogs? To let family and friends keep up on pictures? Strike one. To share our day to day funnies and document family life? Strike two. To dialogue spiritual insights as I grow? Strike three. I would like to do all those things, but I simply can't keep up!

I think one big problem is all these kids I have! haha By the time I upload cute pictures of them, they are 2 months older! By the time I upload videos, they are 4 months older. By the time I sit down to share what God is teaching me, it is not as fresh in my mind, and I have discussed them with friends, or my husband and already bounced around all the conclusions.

It is not that I don't want to blog. I LOVE reading everyone else's posts, and every so often I think of a clever post myself. But I decided my blog does not have a theme and will just be random posts when I get around to it! Or at times all pictures! Oh well.

In other news:

ELSIE is 6 months old. She sits, or is a great baby-sitter as Mary would say. Caedmon and Jonas have enjoyed feeding her her first solids. She likes broccoli!

We are dealing with some whining from JONAS but are finding that reality consequences work, for the most part. For example, he was whining at the table the other day when we had friends over, so he took at nap at 11:30a.m. and skipped lunch. He is starting to enjoy doing more things for himself. He has a tender heart for people and Jesus, so far. As for academics and learning anything on purpose, this kid is a rebel! My goal is to teach him something accidentally. He is constantly making up words that Caedmon and him use in conversation. My name lately is Mumpo, Caedmon is Bopopo, and Jonas is Nafis.

CAEDMON is getting so smart! I am amazed when we work on academics what that kid can retain! He knows the geography of probably 30 countries and many states! We are learning how to sign the alphabet together-he is very proud of spelling everyone's name! He really gets the calendar and when seasons happen as well as our weekly calendar and what usually happens on what days. He recently learned to count to 100 and we are working on more math. My most proud moment recently though was when he brought Jonas and his friend Shekinah into his Thomas tent each holding a Bible, and recited Isaiah 53. He is already holding Bible studies! :-)

Update on my other love-Jason is still wonderful! I have a beautiful pink bouquet from him on my table, and we had a great Valentine's Day date! My friend Chris watched the kids and we hit up a Chipotle knock-off and watched Fireproof. We have really grown exponentially this year in our marriage. God has been very faithful to us!

I guess that's the update for the next 3 months, if I am lazy like usual.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


My favorite part of the drive to Kansas is the chance to listen to my own music with no interruption! The kids sleep in the backseat and Elvira, our gps, takes me smoothly through the cities. On a moonlit night it is almost magical to listen to heavenly music while driving past vast farmland.

On the way back, I decided to visit some tunes on our mp3 player that aren't my usual favorites, namely, David Crowder's. My husband is an avid fan, but it's never been my style, particularly. I found myself so blessed by his music though!

ANYONE who has never listened to his album, "Collision" from start to finish and intentionally listening to everything, is missing out! He is a musical genius, I am convinced, and the journey he takes you on is amazing. DO IT! So I reluctantly admit I have become a fan.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


(Just a picture of my enchanting backyard)
The new year begins and I reflect: what are some goals to strive for, goals God desires in my life, goals to prioritize my time?

I would like to be gentler with my kids.

I would like to get back in shape.

I would like to be more bold in witnessing, not just in acts of love and friendship, but in direct words.

I would like to be less selfish with my time.

I would like to invest more and more in my marriage.

I would like to pray for my children every day.

I would like to continue memorizing Scripture.

Noble goals. Yet I realize I am completely powerless without Christ. Simply put, I resolve to follow Jesus wherever He takes me and I will then bring more glory to Himself through any circumstances in 2011.


My darling Elsie is growing up. She's not in a hurry to sit up or crawl anywhere, which is fine with me! She is content to look pretty and giggle at anything that walks by. She is still a wonderful sleeper and absolutely delights everyone in the house! The brothers are helpful to tell her when to say 'excuse me', to not talk back to Mom, keep her eyes open during the prayer, or cry when she's not content. She is a sweetheart and her main nicknames are Baby Doll and Little Thing.


Yes, this is a post displaying outfits! My Elsie in HER shirt from good friend Sharla. I will be sad when she outgrows it! Elsie got her first shades for Christmas from good friend Miss Sarah. We are all about accessories!
Elsie roots for her ma and pa's team now, thanks to Grandma! Go Trojans!

Aunt Sarah made the kids matching Kansas wheat overalls this Christmas. Happy Kansas Day in a week!
This outfit Sarah made when I was pregnant with Caedmon. She said it was green in case he was a boy :-), but all that lace looks perfect on little Els! Her first wrap-around dress!

Very excited it fits her for the Packers' post season games! We are from Wisconsin now, so we wear green on such days.


Niece Anna and her boyfriend Zak came for my birthday to watch the kids so we could go out! It was sooo nice! They wore them out in the snow and read them many many books! We enjoyed a quiet date, then a fun movie with them! Thank you Anna and Zak!!!

Christmas 2010

Once again, I am hopelessly behind in blogging! The easy way out is to try to tell the stories with pictures. We had a great Christmas at home! J's folks came for a few days, but these pics are before they got here. We had our annual Christmas Eve sleepover under the tree. MY spot was right by the fire-lucky ducky! We painted homemade ornaments!
Reading Luke 2 (yes, Elsie had to have a bow to match her red pj's on Christmas!)

Sorry the picture is flipped, but when you're "hopelessly behind" you can't fix these things. A favorite gift from the cousins was this trampoline!

I have to add my highlight this year was our church's Christmas Eve service. The pastor's daughter sang one of the most gorgeous solos I've ever gotten to hear, O Holy Night. Christ is still among us! Merry Christmas from us 5!

Special thanks to Chris Hauer who made our Christmas greeting card this year!!