10-31-18 Happy Reformation Day!

This evening we invited some friends over to go trick or treating with us. Unlike the community we used to live in, the houses here are more spread apart and require a lot of walking to get to each one. We hit about half the neighborhood before calling it a night and heading home. The kids seemed to enjoy their time very much and having their friends go along with them was very special. I’m incredibly grateful for this particular family that has watched the kids quite a few times since my dad got sick.


Yesterday my father started radiation. When we were first approached about his treatment before his spinal surgery, we were told that they wanted to do Cyber knife Radiation on him. I had never heard of it before but in researching it more I liked the idea. Cyber knife is much less intrusive than traditional radiation treatments. There are little to no side effects, and the radiation beams can be pinpointed to hit only the cancerous areas. This leads to fewer infections and better quality of life during treatments. As they explained the treatment they told us that it would be approximately 10 sessions, each lasting about 15 minutes. When we got the call last week that he would be starting this week we figured we were in for a few rough weeks of travel, etc. He went to his first appointment yesterday where we learned that it wasn’t going to be 15 minutes, but rather one and a half hour!! However, he would only need three treatments and they were all scheduled for this week!! Such great news.

Unfortunately, Dad started having pain in his side yesterday (unrelated to the radiation as far as we can tell) and this afternoon we decided to take him in and have it looked at. They decided to keep him in the hospital overnight because it appears he has some fluid build up that needs to be addressed. He has been transferred to the hospital that is also doing the radiation treatments, so we will see if he can do his last two sessions this week, or not.

I know dad is frustrated by this set back, as we all are, but we know that God is still in control. Please join me in praying for wisdom for the doctors, a short hospital stay, relief for his pain, and the ability to continue with his radiation treatments. Thank you again so much for your prayers!

10-29-18 Hazel’s Heartbeat

The only time I ever heard Hazel’s heartbeat was two years ago today. It had been beating the weeks leading up to that day, but I hadn’t gotten to hear it. I was laying in the ultrasound room at the hospital staring up at the ceiling, with its faded poster, (a beach scene with a palm tree and white sand) and fluorescent lights. I heard Hazel’s heartbeat as the technician moved the ultrasound over my abdomen. We had been bantering just moments before, my awkward attempt at diffusing a difficult situation. But she had gotten serious and quiet. Her eyes darted from the machine to me and back to her screen. I couldn’t see the monitor, but I could see her face. I could hear her typing. I glanced from her to Tim. No one was smiling. The intense pain that had brought me to my knees earlier in the morning had been replaced by a strong ache that never seemed to subside, and a growing feeling of fatigue and weakness and dread.

Tim held my hand as they wheeled me back to the emergency room, but he didn’t look at me. I saw a tear on his face. When I was back in the room, he crawled into the hospital bed beside me and held me. We both cried. Ten minutes later the doctor came in and told me the news I had read off Tim’s face.

You’re pregnant and there’s a strong heartbeat, but unfortunately your pregnancy is ectopic and it has ruptured. Your abdomen is filling with blood. You have significant internal bleeding. This is an emergency. We are calling in a team to do surgery as soon as possible.

God cradled me during the weeks and months that followed that horrible day. Friends, family, and church members rallied around us as we began to rebuild our lives. Countless meals were delivered. People watched our kids. One of my sisters in law came and sat with me for a few days, just so I wouldn’t be alone when Tim went back to work. Two weeks after it happened, I was back to work too.

The loss of Hazel was our catalyst moment.

In the absence of Hazel, God had planted a desire for change. During my recovery I would watch my children and ache to spend more time with them, to be more involved, and to live life beside them instead an hour commute away. Tim and I, no longer content to live the status quo we had become accustomed to, talked and prayed about our next step. When we were approached about moving closer to my family and closer to Tim’s job, our need for change overrode the fears we had of such a huge upheaval. A plan was set into motion that, little by little, has led us here.

Two years later and I see God’s handiwork woven perfectly through our story and I continue to see it lived out daily, especially in the past two months with my father. He was there all along, guiding our path with his perfect timing, providing for our needs and preparing us for the challenges He knew were coming.

I know I’ll always miss Hazel. I’ll mourn her until the day I die, but will rejoice with her in heaven when we finally meet face to face.

Until then, my sweet girl, know that you are loved. We miss you each day and we long to see you. We are braver, stronger, and more dependent on our Father in heaven because of you, and for that we are grateful. You changed us. Your life mattered. Your death mattered. You mattered. I love you! Mommy

To Christ be all glory!

If you want to read Hazel’s story, here it is. 

A year ago I had a the privilege of sharing with our previous church family how God had shown me joy through our journey.

Thank you all for your continued prayers. Our big week starts tomorrow with Dad’s first day of radiation. Please pray all goes well. Thank you.

10-28-18 Trunk or Treat

A local church held a large trunk or treat event this evening that we decide to take the kids to. Tim will probably be working on Halloween so I thought it might be fun to do this with him. The kids had a wonderful time (minus Baby E’s freak out over Darth Vader.)

C decided to dress as Supergirl and Big E went as Superman. Baby E continued his tradition of wearing an oversized shirt, the hood of his coat over his head, and calling himself Moana. 🤦🤦

They got lots of candy, saw a peacock, met Lighting McQueen, and played a bunch of games.

When we got home, they spent time with Daddy and painted pumpkins. It was a lovely day.


This is going to be a big week for us, and we could use your prayers. My dad is supposed to start radiation this week, but he has lost weight so we have to make sure that it’s still a go. On top of that he has a bunch of other doctors appointments which are sure to leave him exhausted each day. Please pray for his strength, endurance, and the ability to begin radiation.

I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous, but we have the reassuring promise that God goes before us. We have seen him do mighty things over the past few months, so we can pray with confidence that he will continue. Thank you, dear friends.

10-27-18 Distant

I’ve been feeling distant lately. Scattered might be a better word. I walk into a room and have no idea why I entered it. I open the fridge and I stare at the shelves without the slightest hint of what I craved. I need more sleep but I rally against bedtime. I’m hungry, but I’m not. I want to be near people, yet push them away. I long to escape but dread wandering from home. What is this listlessness?

But then I looked at the date and I remembered. Two days until two years.

It’s grief. The kind of grief that surfaces when you aren’t looking. The remembrance that there was a time before and your realize how much time has passed.

You steel yourself against it, you think you are ready, but then it hits and all you can remember to do is hold on and breathe. So you forget things. You wander. You’re listless. You check out. Grief is like that.

But then the day you dread comes and goes and it gets easier to breathe again. You can focus on all the reasons the after was a better place than you expected such pain could lead you. You survived and that’s a good thing and you get to cross off another milestone in your story.

Two days until two years…

10-24-18 The Day We Made Butter

Yes, you read that right. Today we made our own butter. We have been studying American History and our lesson today was to make butter. The idea was that there weren’t stores available back then, so settlers had to do many things on their own. So we gave it a try. I was kind of skeptical that this would actually work. We poured some heavy whipping cream into a jar and shook it for 15 minutes and voila, we had butter. We added a little salt for flavoring and tried it on some toast. It was delicious! So much so, that we might be making our butter at home from now on. 🙂



We were invited to visit a harvest festival with our ‘neighbor’ cousins this evening. The kids have been such troopers the past two months, and haven’t had very much outside interaction, the I was thankful for the opportunity. The kids had a lot of fun. They played games, ate cupcakes, and went Trunk or Treating. I was especially surprised at Baby E who took to the evening so well. I expected him to be clinging to me the whole night, but he really didn’t. That’s a huge step for him. At one point he saw two women dressed like Anna and Elsa and asked me to meet them. He looked love struck! He just stared in admiration. “I love those ladies!” he said as we walked away.


Princess Elena


Captain America


Moana Robin Hood





Thank you for your continued prayers for our family. Dad came home this afternoon and is settling in well. Please pray for many uneventful days ahead. Thank you!

10-23-18 To the Hospital… Again

My father went back to the hospital this evening. He is still dealing with residual pain from this past weekend and it made sense to have him seen. They will keep him for the night for observation and he will see a doctor in the morning, so once again we would appreciated your prayers.



This morning we did our schoolwork in record time and we were finished well before lunch. We’ve had some rough school days as of late, so to have such a great victory meant a lot. This afternoon I took the kids to the library where they picked out books and played with legos. We got donuts as a treat on the way home and they got to play with their neighbor on his trampoline. Hopefully tomorrow will go just as well!



10-22-18 An Unexpected Thing

An unexpected thing happened this evening as I started to edit a video that I’ve been hired to work on. I started getting nauseous. At first I was getting pretty worried… oh dear, what have I picked up? That’s when it hit me… the first few days back to work after my maternity leaves I felt the exact same thing.

Folks, I think I have motion sickness! Twenty years of editing and all it takes is a few months off and I can’t pull myself together! Ha!

So I’ve popped two children’s dramamine and I’m waiting for them to kick in and hopefully I’ll get a few edits in before I slip into a dramamine coma, because unfortunately the children’s version I took isn’t the less drowsy formula.

Uh oh! My eyelids are already getting heavy. *sigh*