Sunday, October 31, 2010

Karl Can Home Video

Here is the video that I put together for Karl's wedding this weekend. It is fun to see how little Kurt and Karl were at one time.

Growing up on a farm provided a lot of unique experiences for us, and a lot of risky situations. I'd like to point out that, yes, Kurt trips over a dead hog on the "Karl can... climb a grain bin" clip. And yes, that is them jumping off of a dresser. I think this is funny, but I'm sure if you didn't grow up taking a lot of risks, it probably isn't. Now that I'm a parent of boys, I'm making decisions about how much risk I let them take.

Parents are surrounded by warning labels and contraptions that help control children. I agree with Teddy Roosevelt, "Far better is it to dare mighty things than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much."

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Movie: Babies

I'm curious if anyone has seen this movie. It is fascinating to see the different cultures on the film trailer. The beginning, when the two kids are fighting, makes me laugh. It reminds me that kids can be raised in such different cultures, but still have the same problems, except maybe the goat drinking out of the bath water. :)

If I had time, I'd love a TV channel of this! It is beautiful to see the children, and reminds me how we are a part of such a big world.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Three Month & Three Year Pics

I shot three month and three year pictures last weekend while in Grand Rapids. The backyard of the Buys' house was beautiful, and the boys were too. :)

Michigan Vacation, Part 3

We stopped by our first home, which was just a few houses down from where we stayed, and took a few pictures in the Ginko tree leaves on our old front yard. We were glad to see they weren't rakin' the leaves off the yard any quicker than we did.

In 2007, Ezra was born when the Ginko leaves turned yellow, and by the time we made it home from the hospital the front yard was full of them, so began the tradition of taking pictures in the Ginko leaves. If we were to ever plant a tree, this would be our first choice!

Here is a little photo journal of each year. It is fun to see how much Ezra grew each year!

October 2007
(notice his blankie is brand now has all four corners chewed off)

October 2008

October 2009

October 2010

Michigan Vacation, Part 2

We spent a beautiful morning at Meijer Gardens in Grand Rapids with friends, the Bierengas. I went earlier this year with T and the kids during late winter. Each trip you see something different, and the gardens are always changing. There is so much for all ages, with lots of spaces just for children to explore and discover. When you haven't seen friends in a while, you really appreciate the time you do get together, even when there are busy kids running around.

Michigan Vacation, Part I

This past week we traveled back to Michigan for the first time in 6 months. After a lot of thought, we decided to take all three kids, and we are thankful we did. I was excited to see Ezra remember our old home, but instead, he remembered where all the toys were at each of our friends' houses. He also knew where everything was at church, like nursery and the lemonade afterward, but he wasn't sure how he knew.

It was important to us that we were able to see Lake Michigan, where we've made so many memories. We hiked at Rosie Mounds in Ottawa County, which we've hiked before. Both Ezra and Elliot walked quite a bit of it.

Ezra's carrying his canteen

Overlooking Lake MI

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Youth Game Night

We were excited to host 412 seniors for their game night. We dipped caramel apples and played Mad Gab and Catch Phrase. It was fun to get to know each of them a little better. It brought back good memories from our youth group serve projects with Brookside's Deep 6 high schoolers.

It has been almost 10 years since I've been in high school, but I enjoyed hearing about some of the same teachers that I had. When I was in high school, I attended serve projects and events with my friends who went to Sully CRC. I don't think I would have guessed I'd be living in the parsonage in 10 years. I wouldn't have been too crazy about that idea at the time. That makes me laugh. It made me realize just how much God has done in 10 years!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Lord, grant me patience to deal with my blessings

Zachary is growing quickly - two and a half months already. There have been several times that I think, "I can't wait until they can all walk themselves," or "next summer maybe I'll just have one in diapers rather than two..." I am looking forward to days that aren't so busy with feedings, diapers, baths, sweeping under high chairs, hauling car seats and cleaning up messes.

Countless times we've been told, "we miss the years when the kids were little," or "they went so fast." Right now I don't feel like they are going very fast, or that I'm going to miss them. In a way I think the testimonies from other parents help remind me to be thankful for these days as best I can. And, photography helps me capture moments that I can't fully appreciate right now because of being worn out, but will later.

Last night I overheard a grandparent-aged couple say, "Wow, that is a busy family," and a person respond, "Busy, but blessed." It was another good reminder.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Zachary's Baptism

Here are a few photos of Zachary's baptism from last month.

I was nervous to keep three boys in one spot in front of church, especially since Brian was going to baptize Zachary with me holding him, so then I wasn't sure who would be watching the other two. By inviting the kids to the front of church to watch we were able to have a huddle of kids to surround us, so that Ezra and Elliot sort of blended in.

Ezra likes to sneak to the front of church after Sunday nights to drink the rest of "dad's water," so I was afraid if he got too comfortable in front he would pull it from the pupit, and we'd have an unexpected baptism. He didn't, thankfully.

We were blessed to have a delicious meal for us and our families provided for us by members of the congregation, which made the day even more meaningful.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A Special Visit

This Monday we were so excited to have good friends visit on their way through Iowa!

We introduced them to Zachary, showed them around the area, shared prayer and a meal, and ended the night with coffee, watching the sunset over the beautiful Iowa fall landscape. These friends taught us about ministry, family, and hospitality during the years we lived in Grand Rapids.

The short time spent together was a gift.