Thursday, September 30, 2010

One sister with one whack!

So, today, I was reminded of the story about the tailor who killed 7? flies in one whack.  Caleb was the fly killer today and his choice of weapon was a Dora book.  Perfect choice in my opinion, since I really don't enjoy reading them anyway:))).  He was expertly whacking flies, but apparently spotted a new victim"on top of Kiersten's head!"  Going in for the kill, he lifted his mighty book and came down with a less than gently, but softer than normal "whack".  Surprisingly Kiersten didn't really cry.  Maybe too shocked or wondering where in the world that feeling came from.  The joyous response from Caleb was, "I dot it, I dot the fly!"
  So, yeah, it's been one of those exciting child filled days.  It started a tad too early.  Around 6:30, in fact.  The boys came into the room and were fighting because both of them wanted to go back to sleep snuggled next to Mama, but neither of them would budge from wanting the same spot.  After getting up we decided that we might as well have some breakfast.  Thankfully I'd taken out some of my homemade cinnamon buns the day before so only needed to heat some water for hot cocoa.  It was a good breakfast, but Caleb's mood didn't seem to improve too much until his afternoon nap.  Before that happened we had one child run from the bathroom yelling, "mom, the toilet's flooding the bathroom!"  See what I mean about an exciting day?  Thankfully it had just started to come out of the bathroom. I'm guessing God thought it was about time to clean my bathroom floor again:)
  The school day started after that. Garrison learned about Gary Goldfish and Elyssia did her various subjects.  Have I mentioned how amazed I am by this little girl that God has blessed us with?  She has the power to frustrate us beyond belief, but then turn around and show more compassion for the lost than many of us mature Christians express, popping out the correct answers to questions we figure she won't know.  Reading with the maturity of an 8 year old and helping out with her brothers and sisters like a little mother.  So thankful for her, even on those frustrating days:). I honestly don't know what I'd do without her.  I discovered that there were a couple of books that we'd failed to pick up with the rest of the curriculum, so I called to order those today.  Surprisingly I can order them from Ontario and it's cheaper than the States price, not to mention that I won't have to pay the crazy shipping price.  Praising the Lord for that!
  I also got to talk to a good friend today.  Not for too long, but hopefully we can remedy that soon:)  It's interesting trying to talk when there are at least 4 other little ones trying to see each other or themselves:) in the webcam.  So thankful for all the means of communication that we have these days!
  So, after a very full day, Scott called and let me know that we forgot to transfer the car seats back to the van.  We were planning on meeting him at the church tonight, but maybe it was for the best with the kids not their usual happy selves. I think Kiersten is working on another tooth and Caleb is sorely in need of an early bedtime.  Looking forward to a relaxing weekend and 1st birthday for Kiersten!  I ordered the ice cream for making all the upcoming cakes today.  It should be in on Saturday.  Just enough time to put them together.  Too bad the church doesn't have a freezer yet.  It would be nice to share the cake, but then again, I think we'll probably enjoy eating it:))).
  One last exciting note before I go.  I was checking to see how loose Elyssia's one tooth was and discovered that the one next to it is starting to wiggle too!  Surprises never cease:)  Well, I'm off to listen to the Patch cd and do a bit of a devotional with the kids before bedtime.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Treasuring the gift of children!

The past couple months God has been reminding me of  how much I have to be thankful for with the children He's blessed us with.  There are busy days when the kids don't get along and the parents just want to give up for the day, but then the Lord reminds us that we are HIS children and we still have issues in our lives to deal with. He reminds us of those who deal with major health issues every day and how each day they get to spend with their child is precious.  Why is it any different for us with healthy kids?  I don't think that we should ever take their health for granted. I was reminded of this when a friend of mine suddenly posted that her son needed to have a major surgery to remove a brain tumor. One day I was looking at pictures of this handsome little 2 yr old, full of life and seemingly healthy and today we're praying that he will survive the surgery and thrive as a normal healthy child afterwards.  I'm so thankful that we have the Lord to go to in these times, but was reminded that I need to be praying for every aspect of my children's lives daily, rather than just when they're sick or misbehaving.
  It's one of those days where extra prayer is needed to be patient with the kids, but also one where I'm reminded to come before His presence with Thanksgiving and into His courts with praise! Now I'm going to go snuggle some cranky kids and read them some extra books!  When you have a moment please be praying for The Pulliam family.  I believe God will honor our prayers and see Zander through this surgery!  Keeping it ever before HIM.  He loves this little boy even more than we do and has a plan through all of it.  Til next time...

Monday, September 27, 2010

Charlie's Baby shower

  Today was filled, but fun and productive at the same time.  Scott made blueberry pancakes to start the morning, then headed for work.  There was enough time to get the kids schooling done, take a super short nap and get the veggie tray ready before heading out at 1.  Shirley met me on the highway to give me her present to deliver and then it was off to meet Scott.  I arrived at his job site, switched car seats, bought a B-day present for another lady who was going to the shower and proceeded on my way.  On the way there was a bit of construction work and I totally thought I was going to be late.  I ended up being the first guest! I took the girls with me and they seemed to enjoy being around the other kids.  There were 5 adults and 20 kids!  If we worked in a daycare I suppose we would have had the right ratio, but 14 of those belonged to one lady:)  Around 4:30 we headed out, picked up some KFC(a treat for us) and turned towards home.  It was nice to walk in the door, but with the busyness of the weekend I was greeted by a bit of a tornado.  Thankfully the weather was really nice and Scott took the older 3 out to put in the second post for his greenhouse and I was able to get the front part of the house cleaned and organized.  A few dishes left before calling it a night.  Unfortunately I don't have pictures of our very busy day...

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Reason for Rejoicing!

  So, everyday there should be something to get excited about, but today was a very special one.  Scott was able to baptize someone for the first time as pastor of Redemption Baptist Church.  Some may be thinking, "huh, what about all those people coming each week?"  Well, they have not yet taken the step of addressing being baptized or joining.  Some of them are questioning and we're just praying that Dennis' step of obedience will prompt others to do the same.  We're finding more and more with the non-denominational attitude around that people don't think it's necessary to be a member of a church.  It's good enough to go on a pretty regular basis.  It's not that we don't consider them like family and treat them like a brother and sister in Christ, but there's just something different about it when you see a person step forward, willing to identify themselves with Christ and becoming a member.  When I've thought about it, the best illustration I can come up with is relating it to a marriage relationship.  Many countries have taken to calling people that are living together "common- law" spouses.  They're looked at by many as being just as good as those who are married.  It's sad to me because they get the same benefits as many of us who waited, got married and commit to a lifetime of marriage to one person.  Many people these days seem to consider themselves common law members of the church.  Not willing to take that final step of commitment.  I have found that I talk to the Lord about it more and more these days.  I don't want to become impatient with people and see them leave because of my attitude.  The Lord is patient and loving to me, even when I don't do what He wants me to do right away.  If I'm growing to be more and more like Christ then I should be doing the same.  Through this the Lord has helped me to keep refocusing on all the good things that HE is doing here.  Praising the Lord for today and looking forward to seeing what HE will do in the days to come!  The kids had lots of fun helping to empty the baptistry. It had a sump pump and a fire hose attached for draining the water.  Elyssia was given the hose and used it to her advantage:)  Thankfully it was a pretty warm day and her brothers didn't mind getting a little wet!  We had a potluck afterwards and although Caleb got his little paws on the brownies, they weren't ruined and everybody seemed to enjoy them.  One lady commented that she was happy Caleb didn't eat them all because they were Soooo good:)  Always a nice thing to hear.
  Scott made buns for the first time yesterday.  They were awesome!  Garrison said he could  eat dozens of them.  So glad he didn't, but it is a good way to fill them up.  I made a practice ice cream cake yesterday too.  I should have taken a picture, but I was more into enjoying the food, rather than remembering to take pics.  There's always next week!  Can you believe that Kiersten will be turning 1 next Sunday?  It really seems like only a couple weeks ago I was driving to the hospital to deliver her.  Since she's still quite small I could pretend that she's not having a birthday, but her siblings are very excited, so I guess we'll have a little party. Just us, but I'll make another ice cream cake and give her a couple presents.  I don't know if it's just me or not, but by the time you get to your 4th child's birthday, it's not really about the gifts anymore because there are already too many toys in the house.  Nana did find something all the kids will enjoy, but I'll wait until next week to show a pic and the kids reaction to it.  Nothing like a little suspense to keep my blog readers interested, eh?
  So, Garrison, our little usher has been doing a good job for well over a year and a half now.  Today, I thought he was going to start throwing the basket up in the air or something.  I missed the signals that he was having an off day and maybe should have had another usher reassigned.  The Lord spared us the embarrassment though and he ended up keeping hold of it and being pretty calm.  I have to remind myself that he's just 3 and he's making lots of memories right now.  Tonight he had a wiggle bug and was sitting next to another couple in church.  He wasn't noisy or anything, just wiggly.  Perhaps he needs to sit with me next week and earn back the privilege of sitting with others.  I rather enjoy him sitting with another couple though because it gives me the extra hands needed to sit with Caleb and Kiersten in service.  They were both pretty good in the evening service.  We didn't have to go downstairs, which is always a good indicator of how they behaved:)
  So, tomorrow promises to be the start of another busy week.  School in the morning, then a baby shower in the afternoon.  I'm not sure if we'll be having playgroup yet.  It might be nice to take a week off.  Looking forward to seeing what new words Garrison can read this week.  I'll have to see whether he can recite Psalm 1.  He was really close on Friday, but having the weekend break may set us back a bit.  I'd like to start another poem, but we'll make sure he has this one memorized long term first.  Til next time, when my kids make life so memorable that I have to share the laughter with others:))).
  P.S.  Kiersten is now waving Bye bye, saying Dada, Mama, Nana, "ank oo" and other gibberish that she thinks mean something.  Another sign that she's growing up.  So thankful that the Lord gave her to us and that we've had such a wonderful first year with her:)  Looking forward to many more, Lord willing!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Every time I turn around...

It seems like every time I turn around these days Caleb is getting into something or coloring on something.  Jumping on the bed, when he's been corrected for it MANY times.  I'm not complaining.  It's just an observation. He can be very good. Play legos and look at books for hours at a time, but this just seems to be the week:)  This morning I was making eggs for breakfast and he was supposed to be putting the plates on the table.  He does this often without any problems.  For whatever reason he put some plates on, but held onto a Tupperware plate. I was transferring the eggs onto a plate and when I turned around I saw this tupperware plate melting onto the stove burner!  I'm not really attached to the plate or anything, but wasn't looking forward to trying to get the plastic off the burner.  Thankfully Scott got it taken care of once it cooled:)  Thanking the Lord for a wonderful husband!!!  What possessed Caleb to put the plate there, rather than on the table, I'm not sure, but that's what happened.
   Kiersten has been getting into her fare share of things this week too:)  She pulls things out of the trash-Yuck!  She climbs on Caleb's bed, crawls to the edge and stands up.  Thankfully it's only a foot from the ground and carpeted:)  She seems to have really good balance though, because she hasn't fallen off YET...
   Last night we went into town early.  They were having an ethnic foods taste test.  It was pretty good and the kids liked it because it had rice, but I'm thankful we had a bite to eat before we left, since there were only 3 things to try and they weren't very filling.  Not sure if it's just me, but I've found that I just like to eat at home these days.  Restaurant food can be a nice break, but it's always more satisfying when we've done the work to make it ourselves and sit down to eat after a busy, productive day.  Could be just me, but it's also good for the pocketbook:)  Not sure how some people afford to eat out as often as they do, but I sure am thankful that the Lord has given me the desire to be at home and spend that time with the family that He's blessed us with.
  This morning the air was filled with geese flying south for the winter.  Kinda nice that we're in the flight path.

Amazing how God has instilled this migratory instinct in birds.  I wonder if there are some birds that rebel against this instinct, saying to themselves that it's too far and too much work?  Just like us humans that are told to do certain things, but refuse to listen to God's leading because it's too much work or too much to give up.  Some birds would die as a consequence, just as many of us, often die as a consequence of our choices.  How many of us know where we're going when we die?  I, for one, have no doubts that I'm going to Heaven when I die, but many others do not.  There are so many left to tell  and so many who "choose" not to accept that there's only one way to Heaven.
  After the "little taste" we took the kids to the park.  It was nice to just watch them play for awhile and run off the extra energy they stored up from being inside with all the wet and cold weather.  Last night the sun came out and it's out again today.  We haven't seen much of it this summer and we're praying for it to be sunny and warm for the next month and a half so the farmers can get their crops in.  It's already dipped below freezing a couple times though, so hopefully the crops will still be okay to sell.  I think they just get paid less for them.  Still learning about this farming life:)
  Well, Elyssia is just about done with her handwriting, so I should go start Garrison's lesson.  His next letter is E - Elephant.  It's neat to see it coming together for him. He's able to put some words together.  Almost has psalm chapter 1 memorized and continues to LOVE school.  Elyssia is getting into some more challenging stuff right now, but continues to do well with Reading, handwriting, science and geography.  Math is coming along for her, but seems to be her weakness.  I think we'll be starting Math-U-See next week.  It will help her to picture things in her mind and it should go more smoothly after that.
  So, til next time...

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Teacher's Tuesday(where the teacher posts student pics:)

                                Elyssia - 5yrs old, 1st grade (Teacher's assistant)

                               Garrison - 3 yrs old, Kindergarten(learning to read)

                                Caleb - 2 yrs old, Preschool(snack monitor:)
                              ~The Three Amigos Are Ready For School~

Monday, September 20, 2010

Pioneer Beauty: Marie~Madeline Giveaway...For One Hundred Dollars...

Pioneer Beauty: Marie~Madeline Giveaway...For One Hundred Dollars...

I'm entering my name in this contest just for the fun of it. It would be really nice to win and get one of the skirts for myself or the aprons for the girls. Whether I win or lose, it's the entering that counts, eh? If I don't win, I hope that Carolyn wins! Two in one week would be something to remember, right Carolyn?

Citizenship test!!!

Scott just called and told me that I received a notice to come and take my citizenship test!!!  It will be on Thursday, October 14th at 10am!  Now that they've given me a date for the test I would really appreciate prayers that I would get between a 95 and a 100%.  You may ask why I want to score that high when I only need a 75% to pass. Well, I've been studying for awhile and waiting for a looong time.  It would just be nice to get most or all the questions right:)  I believe there are 100 questions on the test and that they are multiple choice.  Sometimes multiple choice are more confusing because they just change a word here and there to give it a different meaning.  I'd like a test where the questions and answers are clear and that I'm not constantly second guessing myself:).  My favorite verse is Philippians 4:13-I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.  I'm claiming that verse and trusting that the Lord will see me through it.  I'm not one that will just go and take it without studying, trusting that He will help me pass.  I know that He expects me to do my part and my best, leaving the rest to Him, so that is what I plan to do.  Thank you to everyone that's been praying for me to get to this point.  The place where I actually have a date for the test.  Looking forward to getting this done, having dual citizenship and being able to visit family and friends again:) Praising the Lord for answered prayer!

Some promised pictures...

Caleb was so busy planning his next holdup that he forgot to put on the rest of his clothes:)

Caleb "feeding" Kiersten ice cream.  More like one bit for you. One bite for me!

Kiersten just looking cute:)

Nana "trying" to read to Kiersten:)  She's more of a book "eater" right now.

The view I see often these days:)  2 little teeth on the bottom and 4 up top.

   You might've noticed that there aren't  any pics of the older two.  Their pics were sideways and I didn't want to upload them that way.  I'll try to take some for the wordless Wednesday post:)

The Farmer's dilemma

Yes, I know, I should be starting school right now, but another half hour of the kids building farmhouses and equipment with their lego won't hurt anybody.  In fact, it's probably a part of the required curriculum for a well rounded child at this age:)
  As I look outside at the overcast skies and unusually cold weather my thoughts drift to the farmers in our area.  Last year this time it was actually quite hot and they hadn't gotten enough rain, but ended up bringing in the crops and doing really well.  We prayed for rain most of the summer and did get a fair amount towards the end that helped the crops to get closer to the expected height.  This year, however, has yielded so much rain that there were ponds and rivers in many of the fields.  Creeks that had dried up were flowing again and we had seagulls!  It would have been okay if we'd had a fair amount of sun, but it seemed to rain about once every 3 days or less. Being from an island I didn't mind the extra rain and lack of heat, until I saw the devastation it caused for the farmers.  Then came the early frost. Most are just trying to rescue what little they can.  I didn't truly understand how much they had to lose until this summer.  Many farmers invest thousands and thousands of dollars for the seed to plant.  The paycheck doesn't come until the harvest is brought in and sold.  No paycheck til the next harvest, which is a whole year away,.  That is a looooong time to wait for a paycheck.  The thing is, last summer I was amazed at how much they could earn in one year when the crops were in excellent condition.  Some were making $400,000 or more!  When you factor in the cost of their equipment, gas to run it for at least 6 weeks a year, almost 24 hours a day, taxes, seed and maybe the cost of hiring a field hand or two, a person starts to have questions.  Where have the Little House on the Prairie farming days gone?  I think they were starting to address that near the end of the series, where it was harder to pay taxes and more people were moving to the city.  Kind of sad in some ways.  We've become such a global economy.  We ship our foods to so many different countries that just can't produce enough to feed their populations.  Places like Russia have had crop failure, due to lack of moisture and it looks like it will happen again because their winter crops aren't getting enough moisture.  Some of the farmers hold back part of their previous year's yield for times like this and it goes at a premium, but will there be enough.  It makes me wonder if this is just another part of what is necessary to lead up to the Antichrist being given the power to merge so many things into a one world order.  A move of necessity because so many are starving.  We live in such exciting and scary times.  I'm not in the scared crowd, but have more of the excitement about the Lord returning and a sadness because there are still so many people that are not saved.  They reject the Lord without even getting to know much about him.  Others reject him because they fill up with what the world offers and think they need nothing more.  Then there are those that claim He doesn't exist.  Some would say, "Well, I'm looking forward to being there when they find out differently", but that's a pretty mean way of thinking. I'm thinking it will be a great day of sadness as we have to watch so many people, (friends, family and neighbors plus strangers, that God has to turn away, saying, "Depart I never knew you!"  How that will grieve the loving heart of God to send so many people away because they didn't accept HIS free gift of salvation.  To any who read this that are saved, please let it be an encouragement to tell any and all that you can about the Lord.  Time is short and the laborers are few.  To any that may stumble upon this blog and have any questions, feel free to write and ask as many as you want.  The Lord wants all to be saved and it's not something to put off.  No man knoweth the day nor the hour when our Lord returneth.  It could be today!  It's going to be a wonderful day:)  It's always a good reminder to be doing what the Lord wants all the time too! We wouldn't want to be caught wasting time or doing something He wouldn't approve of.  He's always with us from the day that we get saved, if we always remember that,I believe we will be more careful about what we say, do and watch.  Til next time...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The blessings continue...

Tonight we had the Moir family.  Missionaries to Native Americans in Kenora, Ontario.  There were 3 visitors for our evening service, which is quite unusual, but a blessing nonetheless.  The kids now have three new friends and Elyssia wants to write to them. We'll see how long this lasts:).  Looking forward to a somewhat relaxing week, which means I may not have much to write about, but that's okay.  An uneventful week would be kind of nice after the whirlwind of activity around here.  I'll probably try to make one more batch of apple butter & raspberry jam.  Maybe a couple apple pies and one playgroup, but the rest of the time we'll try to take it easy and focus on school.  Next weekend will be busy and I'll have to think of something to do in the crockpot for potluck(and suggestions are greatly appreciated).I'll be trying to make an ice cream cake for Kiersten's 1st Birthday, in preparation for the in-laws visit around Thanksgiving( where we celebrate Grandad's, Elyssia and possibly Garrison's Birthday too)!  Not looking to do anything big, just a family gathering.  For all of you thinking about that huge run on sentence back there.  Forget about it. It's hard to type quickly and coherently when you've got so many things running through your mind at once.  When I get it down on paper I realize that the week may not be low key at all!  Oh well, it will be whatever the Lord wants it to be and we'll be just fine. Probably happy and thriving with all the busyness and excitement around here. 
  So maybe this week I'll steal other bloggers ideas and mix them with my own.  Thinking that might be harder than trying to write something interesting though:) 
How about:
Mundane Monday Moments
Trendy Tuesday Tots(pics of kids at playgroup wearing brand name clothes:)
Wordless Wednesday
Thoughtful Thursday
Funny Friday Fotos
Sunny Saturday Shots

Heading to bed, while the girls are sleeping:)  Til next time...

Miracles still happen!

Today was one of the most enjoyable Sundays we've had in a loooong time.  Okay, so the past couple have been pretty good, but Nana and Grandad's extra hands made life pretty wonderful.  Grandad has a way of winding the kids up and making them scream with excitement or frustration, but also has this ability to lift them his knee, give them a little smile and a "Shhh" and they actually quiet down.  Nana said that she had to talk to Caleb in a whisper and remind him to be quiet, but I was standing in the back with Kiersten and never would have knows, had she not told me.  Such a wonderful thing to see the kids enjoy the service, their Grandparents company and also be quiet at the same time. 
  We were surprised by the Peterson family too!  Not  Dave and Siony, but another one that we met in Nipawin  last summer.  They were on holidays and heading back. It was really nice to catch up with them.  They drive over an hour to Prince Albert each Sunday to go to church, but there is a man that has preached for them and is leaving it up to the Lord as to whether or not he comes to start a church in Nipawin.  It's something we'll be praying for. They've been faithfully commuting for a long time and it would be nice to see the Lord reward them with a pastor in their town.  There was another first time visitor this morning, bringing our total to 37.  Her name is Esther Reddin and she is on the KDAWN team, trying to deal with the drug issues in Kindersley. Scott has been going for several months, trying to help and she has mentioned coming once or twice, but today is the first time.  She really seemed to enjoy it and we pray that she'll be back.
  After church we went to A& W, The kids were so excited:)  Garrison ended up eating 3 baby burgers, fries and his whole milkshake. Caleb was using 3 straws to drink his shake and was quite comical.  Nana took some pics, so I'll try to post it if we get a cd from their visit.  Grandad told him not to spill his drink and he told  Grandad, "I's bein' careful!".  Such cute baby talk that is quickly fading as each day passes.  Kiersten loved the fact that she could secure her straw horizontally and trap it behind her newly acquired teeth:)  No pic.  I even had the camera ready to take, but in the dash for the car we ended up grabbing extra blankets to ward off the cold and left it behind.  During the course of the meal I looked over after Elyssia told me I bumped her placemat.  She said, "you messed it up".  I messed what up?  Her placemat, said "place one elbow here, and the other one her with a picture of the burger in the middle. Now that she can read AND follow directions, she read it and did what it said.  Making her look like she was protecting her burger:)) I wiped her face, which had a little ketchup, and was told that she was saving it.  "For what", I asked.  To use the moist towelette on! Oh, well, Daddy quickly replied, "You can put more ketchup on then:)". I have a feeling we'll be entertained for years to come!
  So after church we said goodbye, and headed to the grocery store. I don't normally shop on Sunday, but we needed some fresh fruit for the missionary basket tonight.  So, that's all done and now I must bid adieu!  We're getting into the car to head back to the church, feed the missionaries and get to know some more new "friends".  Hoping everyone else's day has also held many blessings.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Quickly passing...

  So thankful that Kiersten's flu or whatever induced the vomiting ended quickly. Probably not fast enough for her, but quickly compared to the ones that last more than 4 hours.  By the time I went to bed she was done and slept on the floor next to me til 3:30.  She nursed and went back to sleep til 7.  Praise the Lord.  I was a little tired, but not like I would've been had I been up and down all night long.  She was her usual, smiley, happy self.  Showing off her new skill of walking and talking a bit.  When I tell her to say "Thank you" she actually says it!  Right now it sounds like "ank oo", but for 11 months that's quite good.  We were able to talk to Christina on Skype and Garrison recited "The swinging tree".  As much as I enjoy it, I'm looking forward to teaching him a new one this week.  There are so many good ones in this book and others, that it will be hard to choose. Maybe I'll have Elyssia learn a different one, then they won't be competing to recite at the same time:))). One thing about family visits, is the opportunity to fix a lot of food.  I should have taken pictures of the pies, because these ones actually LOOKED and tasted good. They usually taste good, but I don't always get the crust rolled out pretty:).  For lunch I fixed Cornish pasties, green beans and apple pie.  For supper I fixed Meatloaf, corn on the cob, cheese biscuits and a bumbleberry crisp. Sooo yummy.  I'll probably have to work twice as hard to work it off this week, but after all the work cleaning the house and preparing the food, it's nice to just sit down and enjoy eating it.
  Tomorrow promises to be another busy day.  Scott was shingling at the church today, so we didn't see much of him.  Elyssia wants to make broken hearted toast(toad in a hole) for breakfast, so we'll start off with a bit of work.  Baths were given tonight and clothes picked out for the morning, so that should speed things up in the morning.  The in-laws will head back after the morning service, but first we'll go with our traditional farewell lunch at A&W's.  Grandad's favorite fast place in town.  The boys were talking about it all day.  Wouldn't be surprised to hear Garrison comment after the offering, "NOW can we go to A&W"?  Gotta love the kid's honesty though:)  We come home for a bit, but then head back into town to meet the missionary and his family.  Help him get set up and feed them supper.  They have 3 kids, quite a bit older than ours, so hopefully the kids will enjoy that.  They usually act a bit more mature than when the kids are the same ages.  Well, we'll see what tomorrow holds, but for tonight, it's off to bed I go.  Definitely don't want to be tired starting off the day tomorrow.  Praising the Lord for Kiersten't quick recovery and looking forward to seeing what blessings tomorrow holds.

  P.S. Please pray for us.  We have a man that wants to get baptized and we're looking at getting something to use at the church, but if that's not possible then we'll need to find something to rent.  Wisdom for everything that involves.  We might have Elyssia get baptized the same day, but we haven't asked her yet if she wants to, so we'll see as the time approaches. 

Friday, September 17, 2010

Family visit and sickness...

  So the in-laws arrived.  The surprise was a big success.  Maybe too big, considering the kids went crazy with excitement.  It was great for the first hour, then Kiersten threw up on me.  Thankfully I'd just put her into her pajamas.  Just a few moments before she threw up she was trying on a new dress that her Nana made for her..  She made matching ones for the girls and they are soooo cute.  I will have to post a picture after they wear them to church on Sunday.  Anyway, Kiersten has been throwing up about every 15-30 minutes.  Poor baby.  We'll be sleeping on the couch tonight to conserve energy for tomorrow. It's a first for her, so it's quite sad to see her feeling so bad.
  We also got to Skype with the bro-in-laws in Calgary.  They are heading out tomorrow on a road trip to Oregon and California.  Looking forward to seeing pics of roads we've driven before.  It's usually more interesting to see someone else's perspective, when it's something that I've done many times and almost take for granted.  Praying they have an awesome time!
  Will go for now.  Try to get a bit of sleep before the next round...

StAgEs Of LiFe

So our oldest woke up to find herself in a new stage of life.  The stage of the "LOOSE TOOTH".  Our youngest has been getting a couple in at a time, so it'll be interesting to see the changes as each tooth appears and disappears:)  Elyssia might have a goofy smile for awhile and Kiersten will take on a new look as she leaves her toothless days behind her. I kinda like the toothless look, but wouldn't want to see Kiersten never get any:). Elyssia is so excited!  She has been wanting to lose one ever since she heard that her cousin Abigail lost one.  Now it's Judah's turn.  If he loses one before he turns 6 then they will have all lost one at the same age.
  On to the other news of the day...  Nana and Grandad, a.k.a. Scott's parents will be arriving tonight!  We haven't told the kids that they're coming, so I'm expecting a lot of excitement when they pull up. We've told them of previous visits, but then we have to hear all week long, "are they coming TODAY?"  So, surprises are nice.  The house is just about ready. Just a few pies and pasties to make and we'll be ready. I'm pretty much over my cold and looking forward to having company.  It's also the weekend after we finish homeschooling for the day, so I'm looking forward to that as well. 
  Tomorrow is a workday at the church.  The men will be replacing the last of the shingles on the church roof.  Praying for their safety, as it is a very steep pitched roof on pretty much every side.  They were up there a couple months ago and it went just fine, so I know the Lord can protect them and my worrying won't help anything. 
  Scott brought home batteries, which means I can start taking pictures again!  Hopefully I'll get around to it. It's been a while and I've gotten out of practice:)  Til next time...

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Welcome to the Family!!!

So, this morning while cleaning downstairs I found a...........FROG!  The kids think its awesome and has now become a member of the family.  He even has a name.  Hopper Jack Holloway.  I never thought I would have a frog for a relative, but that is life for you:)  The kids are catching crickets for him and Scott is catching flies.  The excitement around here over the frog certainly rivaled having visitors:) 
  Today is also the day for harvesting some of the garden.  We are going to have to find something to do with the pumpkins.
  School was quite fun today.  Garrison is on F, Fox.  He also did quite a bit of matching and fine handwriting.  Amazing what they can do at this age. Elyssia has her first Geography test, but Scott is going to administer it, so I will post how she did another time.  Sounds so formal! All in all, it is a very busy day and the youngest calls and REQUIRES an answer:)))

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Kiersten's Catching Up!

Where to begin...  Kiersten has been an incredible blessing as our 4th child.  When we found out that I was pregnant I wasn't sure how I would do with 4 so close in age.  The Lord formed her in my womb and has given her one of the sweetest personalities ever. She is full of smiles and giggles.  Mostly content to just observe the busyness of our home.  She has had the hardest time with teething, but has been amazingly sweet in spite of it.  She is walking and starting to chat a bit.  She says Mum Mum and Dada. She tries to sing along in church and is addicted to ice cream:)  Totally my fault.  She already knows what I'm talking about when she hears me say it!  She gets over to me as quickly as possible and squeals for her share, quickly rewarding me with smiles when it enters her mouth.  The Lord has truly blessed us with growth in many areas this year.  Allowing us to enjoy all her stages and appreciating all the time that we get to spend with the kids.  Even those late night snugglers that find their way into our bed.  We joke about getting another queen size bed and having a wall to wall bed.  We put them to bed in their own rooms and they sleep well most nights, but at least twice a week we end up with several warm bodies pulling the covers their way:)  The one that brings the most discomfort is often Caleb.  If there's already another child in the middle of the bed he lays across me legs and goes back to sleep.  I should just get up and move him, but he really seems to like it:) It won't last forever and I know that I will miss it when they grow past the stage where they want to be snuggled.  We're trying to live life in such a way that we don't have regrets for time ill spent, words of love and apology not said and making as many memories as possible.  Loving the way that the Lord is opening up so many opportunities to teach them about Himself.  They are like little sponges and I look forward to hearing what Kiersten's little girl and big girl voice will sound like.  When I call home and Elyssia answers the phone I still hear a babyish voice, but she is growing up really fast and is such a blessing as a big sister.  Yes, there are days where she is a negative influence on the others, but her helpfulness far outweighs the other.  The other little girls at church finally started to notice Kiersten. Before she only got glances, but now that she can walk with them she's become a little playmate in their eyes.  I love the sparkle in Kiersten's eyes when they come to play with her.  It's like she's saying "I'm a big girl now, they want to play with me, I have friends!"  Fall has started and Winter always comes on its' heels around here.  We had lots of rain this summer so it's kinda felt like Spring all summer.  Now it's Fall and I'm more in the mood for baking and fixing things to warm us up. I'm sooo thankful that we have the kids, their homeschooling and the church to keep up busy during the long, cold winters here.  I'm hoping that the winter passes as quickly as the summer did though.  Maybe even faster, because with Spring we're hoping to take a trip to Georgia.  One thing at a time though and I'm kinda stealing Kiersten's post to talk about it:)  Well, it's about that time.  It's getting late and Elyssia is playing a game of Checkers with Daddy before bed.  Til next time....

Humor Compliments of CaLeB...

  Teaching two year olds Bible stories can be quite humorous at times.  They either don't hear what we say clearly or their childhood thoughts figure it means something else:)  I've been trying to explain to Caleb about getting saved, why we need to, what sin is, etc...  He tells me that he's going to Heaven, Unca Peston is going to Heaven, Daddy, Garrison, Mommy and Leesie are going to Heaven.  Garrison tells him that he's not going to Heaven and it usually starts one of those "are not" , "are too" arguments.  So, the other night I was talking to Caleb about the garden on Eden.  What he took away from it was, "I not eat the fruit, it makes God sad.  Mommy and Daddy too".  So, we haven't really been able to move past that.  Then one night at prayer meeting Scott was talking about Uzzah touching the Ark of the Covenant and that there were consequences for his disobedience even though he thought he was helping.  What Caleb heard was, "Don't touch the (markers) Uzzah!  So, the whole evening Caleb was saying, "I gotta tell you somepin Daddy, Uzzah touched the Marker! God said don't touch the marker, shaking his head."  We couldn't help laughing and I figured that it was blogworthy:). 
  His latest obsession is puzzles and coloring.  He could do them for most of the day.  The only thing with coloring is that he likes to hear me praise his coloring so much that he usually ends up coloring 6- 10 pics in ONE sitting!  We're going to have A LOT of artwork on display:)))
  He's been sitting on the potty off and on over the last month.  Sometimes taking himself.  I don't think he's quite recognized the feeling yet before he has to go, so I'm not pushing for it full time yet.  He's about 29 months right now, not yet 2 and a half and I'm quite sure he'll be potty trained by 3.  Garrison is very advanced, but he was 3 before it became a "success story".  The Lord provided a while back for the diapers, and it's not really any more trouble to change his diaper since I'm doing Kiersten's around the same time.  What would be funny is if Kiersten potty trained at 18 months like Elyssia and they both finished at the same time, thus eliminating the need to do any diaper changes for who knows how long:).  Not pushing for it though.  Kiersten saw him sit on the potty and was actually trying to push him over:) 
  Caleb loves to sing and was quite vocal on Sunday. The thing is there aren't that many words making sense.  When we sing O Canada or the ABC song I can at least understand the majority. He figures he should sing loud like Daddy, not understanding that Daddy is the song leader:)  We sound like we have a large congregation though:)  A couple months ago Scott took Garrison and Elyssia with him the the rest home.  Apparently Garrison was singing quite loud because the lady next to him asked him to sing quieter.  He does seem to pick up on the words faster though. I think that's all for Caleb right now.  He is still climbing, falling, sitting on my table and countertops, no matter how many times I correct him.  He even says, "I put my bum on my chair!"  He is a big helper when it comes to cleaning up or cooking though.  He likes to be in the middle of the action.  He's still a HUGE meat eater, but always has a good variety and doesn't seem to be too picky.  He's not big on certain pastas, but his grandad, whom he seems to resemble in features, expressions, etc, is also not overly fond of pasta.  Time will tell, but right now he's definitely a Holloway.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Playgroup Blessings

Playgroup was one of those things I was uncertain about. I wasn't really sure that it was the Lord leading me to do it. A couple people in the church had approached me about it and at first I just thought of all the extra work it was going to be. So, we set the date, a bit nervously, and dove in with both feet. Setting things up so that it would keep the kids interested long enough for the parents to talk. The first week we thought that no one was going to show up. 15 minutes into it we had a mother and 3 girls walk in. She attends the church on a regular basis and we were thankful that the kids at least had some kids to play with. The next month it was just us. The 3rd month in walked another mother and 3 kids. They also go to the church on a regular basis and we were thankful to see them. Still not seeing any interest from the community made me question whether it was Gods will and if we should continue. We had one month left of those that had been advertised, so I decided to stick it out. Garrison had ended up with stitches in his foot, due to an accident with carpentry staples and it was the week after Kindersleys 100th anniversary weekend. Getting ready to head to Castor for their 100th Anniversary had me a bit exhausted. We were looking to the Lord for the energy to get through this one though. Lo, and behold, in walked a FIRST time visitor! Yeah, Praise the Lord. She had one little girl and was expecting her 2nd in about 4 months. All went well til Kiersten bumped her chin and bit through the top of her tongue. The other mother calmly went back to her house for a freezie due to a lack of any ice at the church. No freezer yet! We did get it to stop bleeding and I nursed Kiersten to sleep. What a way to start off, eh! Well, we set up a date to meet again the following week. This time Kiersten fell again, but wasn't hurt. You must be thinking by this time that I'm the worst, most inattentive mother in the world. No, just a mother of 4 active kids that was trying to hold a conversation and keep track of all 4:) So the next one was going well til Garrison pushed Elyssia and she hit her face on a playground bar. Ouch! Once again, she was okay, Garrison was super repentant, promised never to do it again and has been his normally kind self ever since! So, this past week we met at the other mums house. We didn't have ANY accidents! The kids even played on a trampoline! The MOTHER of all injuries:) We enjoyed visiting and the kids ended the last hour by reading a ton of books with the little girl. All in all, I praise the Lord. For a new friend, for new experiences and for protecting the kids from injuries far worse than they acquired. The Lord doesn't promise to keep us from ever getting hurt, but He is always with us when we are going through it. Often calming us and comforting us, helping us not to panic and think calmly about what needs to be done next. Looking forward the months ahead. Full of family visits, holidays, Ladies meetings, homeschooling, play dates, laundry, cooking, baking, a citizenship test(Hopefully), and so much more!
P.S. With the discovery of Skype I have also gotten to talk to my brothers, whom I haven't seen in person for over 2 years, a friend in Africa and a friend in Washington. Looking forward to using it to communicate with other friends that I haven't seen in years:). Signing off before I think of just one more thing I should write about! Will post some more recent pictures sometime in the near future!

New Friends and Old

The Lord has blessed us so much these past couple of months. Over the summer months we were able to make several new friends and renew some old acquaintances. Some were missionary families, some were visitors to church and some were a result of outreach.
I will start with the Wonser Family. I have known Victoria since I was a little girl. Our church supported her parents and Rock of Ages Prison Ministry. Now Victoria, her husband Mike, and kids Dixie Mae, Annabelle, and Landon are headed to the Philippines to work as missionaries! What a fun time we had:). It was so fun thinking of ways to surprise them and our kids LOVED playing with them! It was so sad the see them leave to go to the next church and so wonderful to think of the reunion that we will have up in Heaven someday! They were involved in a car accident in B.C. after leaving here. Rolling the van 4 times down a 15 foot embankment, but the Lord was watching out for them and they are all just fine, Praise the Lord!!! Looking forward to seeing them again one of these days.
The second family was the Van De Kamps. They are heading to Malta. I almost feel like I have been there after seeing their slides, my Bro-in-laws pics and also my Brother Luke's pics. We had such a short time with them, but pray that the Lord allows them to get their full support quickly so they can start the work that the Lord has called them to.
The third family is Adam and Hannah. He is a Dr. and she is a nurse:) They were sent here for 2 months and we are thoroughly enjoying getting to know them. They are another couple that we would just like to hold onto and keep as forever friends. Praising the Lord once again that we will have eternity to spend with our brothers and sisters in Christ!
The most recent would be the Ironsides. My husbands pastor growing up was Pastor Gordon Ironside. One of the nicest, gentlest men you could ever meet. He was called up to Glory last year and is greatly missed. Well, recently we were blessed to have one of his brothers, Allan Ironside, come and preach for us! Scott had known him since he was a young lad:), but this was my first time to meet him and he brought his daughters, Karyn and Deborah with him. It is hard to get so attached to all these people we cant keep! We are praising the Lord for new friends though. They were such a blessing. He spoke at the men's breakfast and came to our house for a birthday supper! We LOVE him! The kids were captivated by his stories and beg us to sing his version of Jesus Loves the Little Children almost every day. The next day he preached the morning message and Karyn played the piano. Both were such a blessing and it was one of the few times that I wasn't embarrassed to be crying during a sermon:) My close friends know that I'm not much of a crier, but I sure have changed since becoming a mother and also asking the Lord to soften my heart. It reminds me of Bro. Walley's favorite verse about going forth with weeping. If that's what it takes to see souls saved then I'm willing cry til I can cry no more. There are SO MANY people in Kindersley and around the world that still need to hear the Gospel and know that God died for THEM and that God loves THEM!!! May we never become to busy to stop and show Christs love. I feel like the Lord has given me a little glimpse of Heaven this summer. Meeting so many people that Love the Lord and not wanting to let go. Looking forward to going to Heaven where we can fellowship forever!


I know I am doing a lot of posts tonight, but its the first time Ive had a chance to catch up in quite awhile! Its quiet and so much has happened that Id like to get most of it written down before I forget:) We started homeschooling about 3 weeks ago. I was a bit nervous and concerned about how I was going to get it all done in a day. 2 homeschooling and two hanging off my skirts:). The Lord has provided though and its going AMAZINGLY well! Were having fun and most days are pretty stress free. Elyssia is doing Rod and Staff math and handwriting. Shes enjoying their second grade reader and the geography and history lessons with Scott. I started Garrison on the ABCs of ACE and he is LOVING it. We've done the Aging Ape, Antelope, Armadillo, and Milton the Mule. There are fun songs, games, stories, Bible stories, character traits and activities for each one. I gave him a poem to memorize and he far surpassed my expectations. He had it memorized and was reciting it in two days, with expression, actions and a bow at the end:) Elyssia also memorized it after hearing me read it to Garrison several times. Caleb keeps busy with puzzles, coloring and snacks! Cant forget the snacks. I think that's the favorite part of their day. I usually try to pack them a lunch and hang it on their desk before school starts. Kiersten crawls around, nurses and takes naps, which is quiet accomodating of her. I wont say that we haven't had our share of fussing, but overall its been quite wonderful. Were loving the routine and I believe that its drawing us closer together as a family. Were also doing a devotional with them at breakfast time and to start off the school day. Their spiritual growth is definitely worth giving up all my free time for. Lest any of you think that there is no music involved, I will include that we sing O Canada and the Alphabet song just about every morning:) The older two have them memorized and Caleb has his own version. Kiersten adds her little voice and I'm praying that some day the Lord will allow it to be a harmonious blending of our voices. For now, its an exuberant rendition of any song we sing:) In case you are wondering why I am not using apostrophes, there is something weird that I cant fix til I ask Scott, so for now I will do the longer form or just let it look funny:))).

Ladies Meeting

So, last night we started up with our first ladies meeting since our break for summer. It was SUCH A BLESSING! There were two ladies that had not come before. One who had never come to our church before. The Lord just seemed to bless every part of it. Opening up discussions about praying for our children and not giving up on them. So hard for so many when they choose rebellion, but so worth is when the Lord gets the victory in their life and they end up loving the Lord with all their heart, soul, strength and mind! I really wasn't feeling well, fighting a cold and sore throat, but the Lord gave me strength, energy and enthusiasm to teach the lesson on Miriam. So many lessons to be learned from her life. She was so courageous and responsible at such a young age when her mother told her to keep an eye on Moses in the basket. To approach the princess and not let on that she was related to the baby. How God blessed Jochabed for trusting the Lord and giving up her son in order to save his life. I was touched by how God allowed her to still have the privilege of nursing him, even after thinking that she might never get to hold him again. Thinking about giving up any of my four and the precious time of nursing them, yes, even those late night feedings:). It was a bit heartwrenching, but the Lord rewarded her obedience and allowed her those extra years to nurse, train and instruct Him in loving the Lord. If not for those years, he would have probably been reared to worship false gods. Anyway, back to Miriam. How she was a leader with the women in praising the Lord in song. How thankful I am that the Lord has given us so many songs and praises to sing. They are the uplift on a discouraging day and often can change the whole attitude of the household! Then he allowed her to help her brother when they were leading the Israelites out of Egypt. Also the lesson on how pride and envy can get the better of us. They, in leadership, were not immune to human feelings. Wanting to be noticed and appreciated more. She went to far as to murmur against Moses and God had to punish her with Leprosy! How Moses pleaded with the Lord to heal her, even after she hurt him. The love of a brother was wonderful to see and made me appreciate my brothers even more. Even though they are really far away I know that they care about me and if I really needed them they would find a way to come. The fact that they will pray for me when I need it is also a big comfort. I just praise the Lord for allowing me the opportunity to study for this lesson and to share it with the ladies. It was a sweet time of fellowship and after talking with some of the ladies I arrived home close to midnight. I think that I had Scott a bit worried at the lateness of the hour, but the Lord just opened up the opportunity to talk and really share love and concern for some of the ladies and what they're going through. Praying that we will have many more meetings like this, only not such late nights:).

Our usher shares his thoughts...

As many of my friends know, our son, Garrison, age 3, is our usher. He has been doing it since we held our first service and has done a very good job. Occasionally he gives us cause for much laughter. For instance, when someone waves him on because they are not putting anything in that week. He gives them this look that is better than any guilt trip. Believe me when I tell you that we DID NOT teach this too him. He has a definite gift of expression. Something my dad was blessed with and I pray that Garrison inherits a LOT more of his good qualities. The gentle, loving way that he dealt with people is evident when his sister pleads with him to share something. He often says, no, but if you say please then I will:). So, this week I have a new usher story to tell. He took the offering, but for whatever reason our pianist did not play any music. After he was done he hands the basket to Scott and says, There isn't much money in there this week. Just paper money! He has never made a comment about the money before so it was hard not to laugh. Many of the other people were laughing, so I don't think that he offended anyone. Maybe it is a testament to the fact that our people are very giving and there is usually quite a bit more, or just the fact that there weren't coins, which kids seem to think indicates a lot more money than that paper stuff:) Either way, he keeps us smiling!