Monday, April 29, 2013

Exploring Childhood

Sometimes I wish my kids get to experience a childhood like I did.  Growing up close to family, being close friends with their cousins. It continues to be a grieving experience living so far away from my idea of childhood.  But what I love is that God always shows me how rich he’s blessing my kids when I might have a day when I just would love to go to our nieces or nephew’s school plays, games, drop by our parents’ houses, etc…

This is the childhood the Lord his blessing them with.

Zip lines.  Rock climbing.  Throwing rocks into the river.

Mountains are in our backdoor and my boys love to explore them.  (I have learned to enjoy them more through sniffles and sneezes.)

A boy’s dream.  What a blessing.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

A Girl's get-a-way

A few gals and I were able to head out of town on an overnight trip recently.  I had so much fun.

We picked a nicer hotel, which was actually affordable.

The hotel offered a lot of spa services.  As I looked over the list I had to chuckle because Botox was the cheapest option at $10/injection.  We decided to go for the pool instead.

It was relaxing.  They even brought us tea.

We had dinner out without having to cut anyone’s food up.  Or clean up the floor.  Or wash any dishes. Beautiful.

We enjoyed some sweet girl time later in the evening.

The next day we explored a new city.  Which was so cute.  Seriously can’t believe this is only an hour and a half away.

We had fun browsing the line of vendors, stopping to check out jewelry and souvenirs.  I love some of the pottery they sell here.

But not all of it.

And the park…wow.  I want to go back.

It was a refreshing get-a-way.  I’m thankful for the little break and for a great husband who took care of the boys while I was gone.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


My boys love to paint. I always wonder why we don’t do it more often but then last week I had few paintbrushes loaded with paint, fly across the kitchen and then I remembered as I was scrubbing paint off the wallpaper......
Micah + Paint= a BIG mess.

But I guess the rarity of painting increases its appeal so we'll stick to that until Micah knows how to handle a paint brush better.

I am glad I was able to capture a little of the joy painting brings to them.

Monday, April 22, 2013


I guess it’s finally time to blog about our news.

We’re expecting our fourth little one. 

I’m now 4 months along.  16 weeks and feeling this little ones movement, which has been a huge relief.  And I'm starting to look pregnant.  I guess your 4th baby your body just remembers what to do.  I have a feeling I'm going to have to pull out the maternity clothes pretty soon.

This pregnancy has been wrought with a heavy load of fear and trepidation, which has been more difficult than all the physical nausea.  Although our hearts really wanted another child.  It’s gripped me in a way I didn’t expect.  Since losing Seth, we have been thrust into a reality that not all pregnancies result in a healthy baby.  Before our life changing ultrasound with Seth, I had an innocent outlook on pregnancy.  Even though I’ve experienced scary things with both Calvin and Micah that innocence was still there, because despite all my complications we were able to take home two healthy babies.  After losing Seth that innocence has been stripped of us. 

For the longest time I didn’t let myself connect with this little baby, although my heart desperately wanted to.  I guess it was self-protection and I just marked time waiting until I might lose this sweet gift of life. 

I’ve never been one to struggle with fear or anxiety, but this pregnancy has been filled with it.  It wasn’t until a few weeks ago I felt the Lord’s peace.  Not in the sense that everything was going to be okay and that we were promised a healthy child or even to be able to hold this one.  But that he’d walk beside us through it all.  I was smacked upside the head with the fact that I was dismissing his goodness and ultimately I was not believing God for all he is.  It was huge and it was at that point I let myself dream about this little one.

Dream about life with 3 children on this earth….again
Dream about baby quilts, names, wondering whether we’d have another little one with light hair.
The dreaming continues.

So I’d love your prayers. It’s a daily battle of choosing to live in God’s love rather than fear.

Each ultrasound comes with nauseating fear, but I’m praying I’ll trust the Lord with whatever he has in store for this little miracle.  We’re thankful that we have the privilege to have another child.

And for those of you wondering about my due date.  It’s right smack in the middle of birthday madness week.  October 7th.  However I have never made it to my due date, but wouldn’t it be something if I did, 4 birthdays in a week timespan.  That would be a wild blessing.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Celebrating Easter 2013

This year Easter just snuck up on us.  One week it was a month away and next thing we knew we were playing catch up trying to get through our resurrection eggs in time for Easter Sunday.

This year it was filled with less extras, but was so sweet because of it.  At lunch we opened our last resurrection egg and read and talked about what the significance of that empty tomb.  I have loved our conversations with Calvin recently about Jesus.  He’s really starting to get it and ask some good questions.  Now just so you don't think it was a peaceful time, the whole time Micah just kept saying, “pray, pray” getting louder and louder.  The poor boy just wanted to eat.  But I’m thankful that even now Micah’s hearing about resurrection and salvation.

I had some left over shrink wrap covers left over from last year.  So Easter morning I boiled some eggs and Marvin helped the boys wrap some eggs.  It was by far my favorite egg decorating experience.  I just turned on the chai-nik (electric kettle) and made sure the water stayed hot and you should have heard the wows.  They were impressed.  I forgot to bring them to our egg hunt later in the day, so we enjoyed them for lunch that week.

We had an egg hunt at home and Calvin was so excited.  He was literally bouncing off the walls in anticipation.  After each egg Micah found, he would plop himself down, open it up and gobbled up the candy.  He enjoyed the sugar tremendously.

The boys enjoyed a few goodies grandma and grandpa sent.  

When I was busy cooking and Marvin was having his quiet time Micah figured out how to get the package of little chocolate bunnies opened and devoured all of them.  He loves chocolate.

Later in the day we were able to get together with other ex-pats in our area.  It was a sweet time together, we had an egg hunt for the kids, then a worship service together.  Unfortunately by the time our worship service began it was freezing and I had a little boy crashing from his sugar high and ready for bed.

We’re thankful for a reason to celebrate.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

What a week

This week has been cloudy, rainy, muddy, cold and just plain dreary in our part of the world, it even snowed.

Our heat was turned off last week so we’ve been freezing since.  We’ve been bundled up, drinking plenty of tea, and I’ve been trying to find more things to bake.  (We have city heating, so we can’t control our heat.)

Being so cold all day long, it’s been very hard to be productive, so Thursday I broke out our electric heater, which has helped me get a few more things done around the

I walked into the living room this week and stepped on this….

It went through my house shoe and went into the arch of my foot and stayed.  I had to pull it out, which was probably the most traumatic part.  OUCH.

I was thankful Micah loves to find my cell phone and usually knows where it is.  He quickly brought it to me and after talking to Marvin, I calmed down a bit.

After multiple meltdowns this week, we instituted a new rule, no candy until family day. Oh my goodness, does sugar turn other people’s children into different people?

We tried our hand at quilling this week, I bought a little kit here, and I read all the instruction in Russian.  I think it's the first craft I have learned how to make in another language.  It was a fun little project.  The actual quilling of the paper was a bit difficult for Calvin to make sure it was staying in a straight row, so he was in charge of glue and for forming our quills into shapes.  He took his job very seriously.  Calvin decided it needed something else and thought about using some markers, but once glitter glue was suggested he thought that was a fabulous idea.  The boy loves those things and I'm thankful we can find them here.

There’s always lots of wrestling in our house, especially when daddy’s home.  Micah is usually the instigator, he’s such a rough and tumble little boy.  It cracks me up how often he'll come charging straight at Calvin ready to take him down.

And this guy. 

Oh my I love him!  His little personality is growing each day and so is his curiosity and capabilities.  Might be one the reasons I sleep well each night.