Tuesday, July 30, 2013

team effort

This morning there was another  awful accident on our corner. One man lost his life, and several other's lives will never be the same again. As I got the adorables ready for maxers golf league, my gaze was pulled to the scene of ambulances, fire trucks,  policemen,  and eventually the aeromed helicopter visible from my window.  Because the road was impassable,  many vehicles used our driveway to turn away, another reminder of the tragedy just down the road.

Undoubtedly the best part of the morning was connecting with brad, hearing his voice and knowing he had been spared from any involvement in the accident.  Thankfully brad works just down the road from our home, but as this  morning illustrated so devastatingly, bad crashes happen even in close proximity.  tomorrow is promised to no  man, and our presence here on planet earth today is merely an act of God's abundant grace. watching that reminder today humbled me, making me recognize once again how blessed I am to get brad as my partner.

As Brenda drove away with her three kids and our last puppy, bear became super frustrated.  He was sad to give his puppy away and our explanations that we exchanged the dog for money made little sense to a boy who so enjoyed racing and petting and playing with a puppy and has no concept of the future fun to be had with spending money.  Especially as we are only giving the adorables a dollar a puppy now, and depositing the rest for them to have later, when they are able to make better choices in spending their cash rather than purchasing monster trucks and golden quarters made of  chocolate.

Bear and I had experienced some previous altercations today, so my patience was spent and I was at a loss as to how to help wes comprehend what this transaction meant. So I administered a quick lecture on having a happy heart and headed inside. I met Bradley in the garage and gave him a quick synopsis on the situation known as weston.  I paused at the door as I heard brad telling wes that he was proud of him. brad spoke of bear's responsibility well achieved. brad held bear and told him that he loves him. Brad comforted bear and told him he was a good boy.

What powerful and meaningful words from a father to a son. So grateful to parent with such a partner.

summer slumbers

 as the summer days slowly draw to a close, adorables collapse from exhaustion, yet fight bedtime vehemently. This  is one battle i always win due to the amazing motivation of my own exhaustion.  Once snuggled, the adorables are amazing summertime sleepers. There have been mornings I dont see one  of them until almost 10! The combo of fresh air and sunshine and fresh air does  wonders.

Especially thankful for being able to stay home with the babes during these beautiful summer days. my faves are the days when we all get to wear at leat pa rt of our jammies well into the afternoon,  and sometimes a full 24 for the adorables.  Sweet. maxer was just picking some beans from ghe garden wearing his robe. Very classy.

Here is bear's ensemble of the day: comprised of mostly stuffed animals rammed inside his shirt , the pregnancy obsession may have just reached a new level.
Another aspect of being pregnant with baby Ralph that has the rapt attention of the older sibs is the scale.  Since my  weight decreased drastically before climbing, we have joined efforts to ensure baby Ralph is gaining as he should. my careful monitoring has resulte in the boys' hard at work making the scale read the highest number possible. 


tonight i am sure to sleep well as right now we are awaiting the arrival of the adoptive fam for the very last pup. the puppy business is unlike any other industry i have been apart of. I have received hate emails for running an unlicesnsed puppy mill (false allegations just to be clear),  and had phone conversations with people pleasding for me to come and  inspect their homes to be sure they are a good candidate. overall, it seems each pup received a very loving home. thats not mine.

yesterday, a family bought our fave pup, little harv, a mini version of big harv. max, who hasbeen so responsible and careful about caring for the dogs, returned from walking the mama dog to find little harv already on his way home to his new family. fearing that mawell could beupset, brad offered to stop the fam so max could say goodbye. max assured brad there was no need, then asked abruptly, "wheres the money?" Good to know he recognizes the value of a dollar, or dog...

Tuesday, July 23, 2013



What a complete number.

The number of seasons in a year.
The number of quarters in a dollar.
The number of pups sam had. All of which r still available to purchase and would undoubtedly make a perfect fit for your fam (call me ;))

And the number of my children. Because I am a little pregnant.  Like 14 weeks.


We are to be a family of 6. That's so many kids!  Bradley and I feel unbelievably blessed that god will gift us with another adorable.  We really consider our babes to be beyond precious in every way and find the prospect of another sweet child to be super thrilling.  And scary.

This pregnancy has been unique. Physically, I have experienced the same symptoms as with my first three. In fact,  my weight reached an all time low with this babe. fatigue has settled in tightly and seems super reluctant to leave. Ever. but my emotions have been different.  Like the overwhelming feeling of my entire first trimester was trepidation.

Four healthy pregnancies in a row seemed super unlikely. And unfair.  Why should i get the blessing of conceiving and giving birth to 4 adorables when others so desperately desire to add to their fam and find it impossible? ! And my three babes already born are really amazing, but really demanding and overwhelming.  Remember ayla jo and the treadmill? , Well that was not my finest parenting,  what will my childre's future look like with a mama whose attention is divided yet again?!

When my mind spun and my heart raced and my stomach revolted and my body gave in to exhaustion and my spirit worried, my god waited quietly to carry my burdens with me and celebrate my joy.  And finally,  I surrendered.   I relinquished my worries of the future and finally began to acknowledge the miracle happening within me as a precious gift of which i am not worthy, but have been graced with anyway.

We told the adorables about the baby while camping.  Max giggled as if he thought we were crazy but hes ready for the adventure.  Bear was beyond excited.  He declared his choice of a baby brother named Ralph.  Despite our constant reminders that baby may be a sister and once baby is born, even if it is a brother,  baby will most definitely have a different name, bear only refers to baby as Ralph.  So, now, naturally,  we all call baby Ralph.  Bear will randomly ask how baby Ralph is doing, or offer to share with baby  Ralph,  or let baby Ralph win a game. So beautiful to see his enthusiasm. cupcake has decided she also has a baby in her belly. Cute.

Brad accompanied me to baby's first appointment. I was so nervous and distracted before our appointment, I lost my keys and had to drive the leegwaters van to holland. Once on the road, I discovered the keys were in fact in my purse. Woopsies! We heard baby's strong heartbeat and even got a glimpse of the newest meiste.

  Once again,  I was overwhelmed. With thanksgiving and anticipation and faith that jesus will continue to meet me where I am with his promise to be enough.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

in my next 30 years

Last weekend,  a very strange thing happened... I turned 30.

I love birthdays, especially my own.  But this one was, different.  I felt reluctant to leave my 20's behind and some major hesitation in embracing this next phase of of middle age. After spending some time processing this monumental event, I realized that life just continues 30 or not.

And my life in particular seems very full. I worked the last couple of evenings at teermans and that adds some different dynamics to our days. I enjoy the work and adore that the adorables get some special daddy time. Having any sort of structure in our days is a change from the lackadaisical summer days. So bear has some concerns about not getting the opportunity to fill our days by plucking ideas from his ever working imagination.

Typically,  we discuss some of those imaginative ideas and shape a day of adventure and some productivity.  Some days are just not our own. Neighbours stop in and mama has to prepare for work, which is work in itself considering my usual attire and hairdos.   on Thursday,  bear had high hopes to go to the splash pax downtown holland. We just couldn't fit that grand idea in between our other happenings. Also, our last attempt at the splash pad resulted in 6 minutes of fun followed by lots more minutes of whining.

Brad had no intentions of splash padding with the  babes so he was dealing with some seriously slumped shoulders,  bear's physical manifestation of his severe disappointment.  suddenly, slumped shoulders were the least of my boys' problems.  For harv discovered and bravely confronted a woodchuck!

From the bathroom where I was frantically  applying makeup,  I hear the panicked screams of the boys as they call for harv.  Suspecting harv is merely following an innocent passersby down the road,  I continued my efforts. 2 minutes later,  the boys explode through the door with their harrowing tale. After distracting harv, the woodchuck came after Bradley.  So, being the protector of our children that he is, kicked that animal hard. That attack was quickly followed by several more aggressive swings of a shovel.

Brads daring moves were successful at bringing that  woodchuck down. Both dog and man were splattered with the blood of the defeated intruder.  The good news is that the family remains safe and secure,  and bear forgot about his desire to splash pad.

On that note, i rushed out the door and into teermans with an apology on my lips for being late that not one of my coworkers had heard before.

Yes, I am older.  But who has time to consider these implications when life is so intent on moving forward? As my birthday card from my bro reminded me,  birthdays
are like cookies,  after a handful,  no one is counting anyway.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

mmmm summer

friday completed our two week camping trip at hungry horse.  wow.  it was amazing.  i am always so blessed to do community with really beautiful women, watching and learning from how they parent, do marriage, and just live their lives.  thankful for our experiences together, offering me some times of peace and encouragement when i was under an attack of insecurity.

the wenke's took our camper to canada saturday morning, so i spent the entire day emptying the camper from the remnats of our two week adventure.  though i was beyond tired after making 782 trips to and fro, i was also appreciative of having an immediate need to get the camper cleaned.  otherwise, its a task i keep avoiding.

saturday was full of laundry and attempts to get the house to absorb all the things i took from the camper.  at night, brad and i got all dressed up and joined my sibs to celebrate the wedding of my step sister crystal carrie.  and sunday, well, we had a summer sabbath.

no agenda, no plans.  after the busyness of camping, and the chaos of unpacking, a day of rest was exactly what our bodies and souls needed.  god blessed us with some amazing weather and we took full advantage with weeding and walks and golf and bike riding all in our own yard.  home is so beautiful.

And later this week we experienced the freedom party of the fourth of july!

Celebrating the fourth of july is such a wonderful privelege, and the epotime of summertime. Morning brought a weighty responsibility to ensure that the adorables recognize this day is more than fireworks. my good intentions quickly evolved into a long morning of questions and explanations that brad thankfully came home during so we could learn from his vast knowledge as well as my own best guesses. We had the globe, some construction paper, glue, and the stapler, or stabilizer as the boys call it. There was some intense learning,  but I pray my adorables left our our morning school session with gratitude for being born into such a fabulous country.

We spent the gorgeous day enjoying each other's company outside with the new pups, grilling up some pork, and being mesmerized by the fireworks displayed in our very own backyard.  we even purchased a few of our own fireworks and they were an incredible hit with all the babes. Bradley's hero status ramped up several notches.

Soaking in this summer lovin