Tuesday, November 24, 2009


The boys (except for Josiah--confined to a stroller) Caleb, Nathaniel, Ben, Peter, Fred, Joshua and Sam
The Toth children making a pile on Fred

The beginning of the pile--Fred, Tabitha, Caleb, Moriah, with Hannah getting ready to pile on

Ben is 14 today and likes to play with the camera.

The Toth family was here briefly in November. Their son Caleb was a finalist in the Bible Bee in Washington DC. Due to unforseen car trouble, they weren't able to make it back to our house for the weekend, so we headed up to DC to spend some time with them. We toured museums and saw the Declaration, but the most fun, by far, was all 16 of us in a hotel room! The kids had a ball together. We look forward to more visits.

Today is Ben's 14th birthday. He's excited to celebrate with his friends and with family this week. He was born just after Thanksgiving--1:22 am. The nurses put me in overflow and were actually suprised that I was truly in labor rather than suffering from indigestion like the rest of the women there. At that point, I KNEW the difference, especially after laboring all day. I'm so thankful for this young man. God has blessed him and us!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Birthday, or 40 Here I Come

Barbara, Helene, Donna, Paula and Kathy
Tomorrow I turn 40. Chris gave me the best gift ever--a party on Saturday. He missed my 30th. When we lived in Maryland, our group always celebrated 30 and the passing of the cane. It was tradition. We moved here before I turned 30, so I didn't get the cane or the party. I was very sad. Thirty was not a good day for anyone, so Chris was not going to miss 40. He was going to plan a surprise party for me, but decided that he couldn't pull that off, so he told me about it. A surprise party would have been very nice and a LOT less work. As I contemplated how I wanted to celebrate my birthday, I decided that less was more. Initially, I wanted to fly to Ohio for lunch with Liz, then fly to St. Louis for dinner with Cathy. Then enjoy time with my two prayer partners here. Realizing that was probably out of my range (although Chris did check on tickets and encouraged me to go), I decided to pare my list to just 4 couples so that I could actually enjoy time with them instead of trying to mingle with 20. I have to admit that at 2:00 on Saturday I was thinking, "I hope he NEVER wants to give me another party!" By 9 that night, however, I realized that all of the work was totally worth it. This was the best birthday party I've ever had. It was such a blessing. We enjoyed good food and great conversation. My friend Donna came up with a Scattegories game about me. Then she brought out a ball of yarn. She shared what I meant to her, and then passed it to me so that I could talk about her. Then we passed it around the room and made a web. I was so blessed and so humbled. It truly was an amazing night. I'm very thankful for my wonderful husband who would plan this for me, for my precious friends--those who were here and those who were not, and for the love of God poured out in my heart. So now I'm ready to face 40.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


I have always struggled in some way with Halloween. I wish I could just enjoy it, or not participate, but I seem to be wobbling back and forth. We have had so many fun Halloweens, so I can't say that the day is usually a bad one. This year I was determined that they were not going to trick or treat. Last year they did, and it was a fiasco. Maybe I have control issues???? This year we decided to have a party instead. It was so much fun for all of us and much more satisfying than trick or treat. I gave them money to buy candy, too. I wasn't a total scrooge. Fred had a couple of friends over, Ben had a friend and we had another family (our family away from family). We played games and laughed and ate pumpkin pie and caramel popcorn and caramel apples. This is how I wish every Halloween could be. For one of the games I had everyone blindfolded and handed them bits of food which they had to identify. Even the teenagers enjoyed it.