Tuesday, December 18, 2012

What Hope Do We Have?

Friday I was home, blissfully unaware of what was taking place in Connecticut.  Jared called me and I turned on the TV.  Devastating.  Unsettling.  Disgusting.  A tragedy like this is so difficult to comprehend.  The boys were at school.  I wanted them home.  After watching a bit of the coverage, I turned it off and went to my bedroom to pick up.  In it I found the boys pajamas that they hadn't put in the hamper.  Alex's blanket that he'd left on  our bed where we'd been snuggled up that morning.  It all hit me like a wave time and time again that there were precious kindergarten children just like Alex and Eli whose parents would be coming home to the same thing and it would wreck them.  Their babies were not coming home.

I can honestly say I haven't watched any of the coverage since that day.  Some would argue that  I am unconnected to this horrific tragedy that our country is facing and even I felt that way a bit the day after. Now that we are a few days away from what took place on Friday, I'd disagree.  This past weekend and since, each time I smile at my kids when they are just being kids, each time Alex laughs or Eli gives me a hug or I hear Addie squeal with delight I have that parent feeling where I swell with delight, feeling so blessed.  All parents understand that feeling and it is heightened during times of tragedy.  That feeling is followed by what feels a bit like a punch to the gut and I am reminded of  what several parents and family members in Connecticut are not hearing, feeling, experiencing.  It is at that moment I pray for them.

I am an optimist.  I look for lessons.  I look for the positive.  There of course are some lessons that will be learned through all of this.  It is impossible for this not to change people.  Some find hope in clinging to the good that they still see in the world and while it is possible to find some of that, it is not what I see in the midst of this unspeakable tragedy.

 I see the complete depravity of man.

I see our need for a Savior.

There are a lot of verses in scripture about God healing our wounds and taking care of us but the verse that brought me comfort, and will continue to, is:

Revelation 21:4  He will wipe every tear from their eyes.  There will be no more death, or mourning or crying or pain...

I have Hope.  Not in this world.  I have hope that we are not home yet.  We are not, but there are sweet elementary children that are.  Their parents, families, friends are all hurting and suffering and are still in this world that took their babies from them.  But I have hope that my Savior is caring for them in a way that we can not do here on this earth.

That is where my hope lies.  In my salvation.  In my Savior, Jesus Christ, I have great confidence.  The beauty about this hope that I have is that it can be had by each of us.  We can all have confidence in what our future holds.  Scripture says that "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved".

If you haven't and you are reading this I pray that you will cry out to God and ask him to save your from this sin cursed world, from your own sins and let him know that you believe he came and died just for you, so that you could experience this hope.

If you already have accepted Christ, I pray that you will cling to this confidence.  Find hope in it. Pray that others see your hope and want it.

I am again convinced that this world needs a Savior.  I pray that we will turn to him. He is waiting.

Monday, December 17, 2012


So happy the weekend is here.  Last Friday, Jared and I surprised the boys afterschool and took them to the museum.  The lego exhibit was there and so was Santa.  We got there about an hour and a half before closing which meant the place was EMPTY.  Great time to go.  In fact, there was NO LINE FOR SANTA.  Crazy.  My children however had NO interest in going near Santa so the fact that Mommy could have snagged a great pic, for free, with a pretty authentic santa was lost on them.  Oh well.

We had a great time though.  I love spending time with this little family of mine.


Friday, December 7, 2012


My weekly instagrams!

life rearranged
Apparently somebody wanted s beard.
Addie had fun with paints this past week.  She did a taste test AND painted on a beard. Good times.
Charlie Brown Christmas on Hulu.  This is probably the size of the TV I watched it on as a kid. #traditions
Charlie Brown Christmas.  They quoted scripture when telling the Christmas Story and Eli said "Are they talking about OUR Lord?"  So sweet.
This sweet child was so crazy during her brothers concert that I almost accidentally knocked the video camera over the balcony 2x's.  #gottaluvthebaby
This was after the boys concert.  This little girl wore us out!  She may look sweet but she is a force.  Trust.
The boys got to rent a video game for doing well at the concert so that leaves Addie and I to play with Mommy's phone.  #mommydaughtertime
The boys rented a video game after the concert so Addie and I had fun playing with my iphone.

$2 each at a Mom 2 Mom sale and I have 2 very happy 5 yr olds!
Picked these up for $2 each at the Mom 2 Mom sale.  The boys LOVE them.
Bundled Addie up for a walk despite the cold. Glad I did. Must combat #winterweightgain :)
Bundled Addie up for a walk yesterday .  It was cold but she LOVES getting outside.

So now we prepare for the weekend.  Had a relaxing coffee date with Kim, Addie and Amanda this morning and look forward to getting extra time with all 3 of my boys this weekend.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Twin Moment

I honestly don't think about the boys being twins a whole lot anymore. In fact I mentioned to a seller at the Mom 2 Mom sale that I had to find two of a particular super hero shirt if I bought one because I have twins and my sister said "That sounds so funny to hear you say you have twins. I forget." I actually like that. When you have twins you worry that they will always be seen through the "twin lens". They are not. They are such individuals no one could ever lump them into the same person. That I am confident of. However, looking at this picture I see a twin moment. I missed taking a pic of what happened two seconds before. I was busy in the kitchen and glanced into the front room to see them lounging like they are in the pic except their heads were leaned against one another. Alex had just given Eli a peck on the cheek. Now if that doesn't fill a Mama's heart with joy I don't know what will. Love these two. My twins. IMG_8519

Friday, November 30, 2012


My instagram pics from the last couple of weeks.  I am roddfam5 if you want to follow.

life rearranged
I just realized that you can upload your instagrams straight to flickr.  Such a time saver, however the pics are kind of huge.  I may have to adjust the size in flickr before I transfer them to the blog but I am not re-doing it for this week.  SO here are some LARGE pics of my week.  :)
Love this face.  Thankful for my kids even on a day when they are making me crazyyyyyy!
Love this kid so much.
Oy!  Nap time, I miss you dearly. :(
This is a day when these two crazies were avoiding nap time. They know if they get me laughing I may cave.
Eli wanted a taste.  Immediately following this picture he was trying to wipe off his tongue with his shirt.  #notafan
My sweet sister Molly brought me a coffee one day and Eli insisted on trying it.  I gave him some and it was comical.  He immediately tried to wipe off his tongue with his sleeve.  He was not a fan of the good ole pumpkin spice latte.  Not sure I  can claim him.  Running a couple of errands with my 3 crazies.
Errands with my 3 crazies!
Making granola bars, still need to make dinner, give baths, help with homework and wanted to go for a walk.  Sometimes sister wives sounds like a logical plan ;) especially when Jared works late!
Making homemade granola bars from Skinny Taste.  Yum.
Rough day that required snuggling up with my Addie girl and a pile of her favorite books.  #latergram
A pile of books, a bed and Addie.  Loved it.
@Lisaleonard Scored big at the thrift store with this booster chair thanks to your inspiration. :)

Found this treasure at the thrift store.  All 3 of the kids LOVE sitting in it.
It may feel like 25 out but sometimes we have to get out our energy no matter what the temp is!
I try and get the kids out even when it "feels like 25 degrees" because they HAVE to get that energy out somehow and we all need the fresh air.
This one just drew a picture on the computer and wanted me to send it to a girl in his class.  I did.  Her mommy texted back that she loved it.  Oy. :)
Alex made a picture on Nick Jr and wanted me to send it to a girl.  I did and her Mom texted me back to tell me how much she liked it.  He was very happy.  Oy.

Cousins!! Fun morning at the parade.  Even Andrew is in this one!  @sweetcaroline__
Thanksgiving Parade with the family.
Jared & I :)
Jared and I at the parade.
The stockings are hung with care.  Alex is already filled with "hope that St. Nicholas soon will be" here!
The stockings are hung.  Alex checks them regularly to see if they have been filled.
My kids always have the best oral hygiene AFTER bedtime! "Mom u forgot to brush our teeth!  Ugh.
My kids have the best oral hygiene AFTER bed time.  "Mom you forgot to brush our teeth".  Ugh.  "Mom will you fossil us."  Aka "floss".
First time painting. I think she just did a taste test.  Awesome.
Addie painting for the first time.  Had a little taste test, yum.
Friendly game of Rummikub with this guy, Watching "Family Man", enjoying the fire.
Nice long weekend gave us time to relax by the fire and play a game after the kids were in bed.  :)
Is this really happening in Michigan?  So thankful for a nice walk on this gorgeous day!  Happy thanksgiving!!!
I took a walk on thanksgiving day and couldn't get over how beautiful our weather was.  Very happy.It's a little disheveled this year.  Thank you Addison Lily!
The tree.  We picked it up the day after Thanksgiving.  We actually got a great deal because it was Black Friday.  It was the only shopping we did that day.
First ever attempt at a lattice pie crust.  I'm hoping it bakes up a big prettier. But proud of the accomplishment nonetheless.
Made a lattice pie crust for the first time.  I felt accomplished.  :)
Prov. 28:14 (the msg.) Staying tender- hearted is no easy thing.
Read this, this week.  I liked the reminder.  I am naturally a pretty sensitive person.  I often try and hold that back.  It is hard to stay tenderhearted but that's what God wants from us.  Tenderhearted and open to his words and will.
Went to look at Christmas lights tonight.  This is what Alex wants next year #timetoupourgame
We also looked at Christmas lights and THIS is what Alex wants us to do next year.  Uh.  We need to up our game apparently.  Just to be clear, this will NOT be happening.  #MommyandDaddyareBoring We like white lights  but don't plan to do too many of them.  Of course Jared told him the classic "Dad" line:  "When you get older and buy a house you can put up all of those lights."  Ha, ha.  We are getting so old.  :)

So that is my last couple of weeks in a nutshell minus all of the crazy realities of life that we tend to avoid here on the internet.  :)  Ha!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Post Thanksgiving

We had a really nice Thanksgiving Weekend.  We enjoyed the traditional feast with Nani and Papa and Linda.  We watched movies.  Went on some walks (gorgeous weather here).  Laid around.  Bought and decorated our Christmas tree.  Drove around and looked at Christmas lights.  Went to see "Wreck It Ralph".  It was just good family fun.  Thoroughly enjoyed.  Thoroughly needed.
The boys had their Thanksgiving "feast" at school on Wednesday.  I was so thankful that Aunt Mimi came and stayed with Addie so I could be part of their day.
Big surprise they wanted to be different.  An Indian and a pilgrim.
Look at this goofball.  I love Papa laughing at him in the background.  Classic Eli moment.  The boys ate so many crackers, cheese and summer sausage that they truly skipped the meal altogether.
I enjoyed making the table pretty.  Jared bought the turkey pre-cooked (love that man!).  Mom made the ham and potatoes.  I did the other sides and the pies.  Linda brought the ever-famous appetizers.  Good food.  Too much of it as always.
On the twine were things we are thankful for.
Poor Addie NEVER gets ANY attention.  *wink, wink
We have ridiculous amount of things to be thankful for this year and always.  We thank God who is the giver of all of these thing and we are completely humbled by all of it.  God is good. All. the. time.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Finally, Halloween.

The story in pictures:
This is how the night started.  Addie woke from her nap and didn't even want her fairy gear on.  We let her lay with Daddy a while and figured running late is better than having a crabby 2 year old.  So glad we did because she LOVED the rest of the night!
The classic sibling pic.  Should I be concerned that Alex (AKA Darth Vader) is about to "off" her with his light saber? Brothers.
I told the boys my hair was long enough to do Princess Leia hair.  At lunch I threw on a sheet and showed them.  They LOVED it and really wanted me to wear it for Halloween.  I did.  It was fun.  I haven't dressed up in, hmmmm?, 20 years or so.  At least not that I can remember.
Jared was going to wear our other Darth mask but it didn't work so he opted for Spiderman.
Her first year trick-or-treating.  She would have done each and every house that the boys did but she was frozen solid so I took her back to the house.
We then headed to church for our harvest festival.  Since Halloween fell on a Wednesday, we did both my sister's party and the church one.  The pic below is of my niece Bella with Addie.  She said to me after we took the picture.  "She is the princess, but I am still the queen."  It was SO funny.  She wanted to let her place in the family be known.  Actually she probably was just referring to their costumes, but it was funny!
Here are a couple more of the cousins at the church party.  None of them we actually looking at the camera except for Colin but I had to add it because when we got home Alex and Eli insisted that Celia was a banana.  I assured them that she was mustard.  Of course as any parent of 5 year olds knows, I was wrong. :)
So there you have it.  Such a fun filled night.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


I haven't posted in a little bit because quite frankly it felt weird to do so. We received news last week that our nephew Teddy's MRI didn't go well.  The cancer is back.  With news like this every thing else going on seems ridiculous.  I remember this feeling when the boys were born.  I remember looking at other people while I was driving to the NICU to see my critically ill infants, two of them, and thinking "Wow, those strangers are just going about their day.  They are probably headed to work.  Doesn't the world know that it should be stopping?  I need it to stop, so I can breathe and try to cope with this."  I am guessing that Steve and Laurel are feeling this way.  The world doesn't stop and we must trudge through but that doesn't make the trudging easy or even bearable.

Jared took the boys to church and I am home with crabby Addie.  I always have the best intentions on Wednesdays but often Addison doesn't make it through dinner without her "I am tired and want to be in bed" meltdowns.  So, I spent some time in prayer for my family.  I don't do it often enough that is for sure.  Jared questioned recently whether or not they would do another MRI before putting Teddy's port in to make sure the cancer is still there.  He is believing in a VERY BIG GOD and would love to see a miracle. It definitely convicted me.  Am I believing in such a big God that would take the cancer away before the chemo even began?  I should be.

We want Teddy to be healed of this, of course.  That is our prayer.  We have plans to see him and Laurel and Steve, Nathanael and Allie and for that we are very grateful.

As for the plan, they have a long drive ahead of them to have Teddy's port put back in surgically.  He will receive chemo through it for the next year. Steve wrote about how they made this drive last week with Teddy's wheelchair so that they could take it to someone else who needed it. I am sure they never expected to be returning now and starting this long journey again.  Please keep them in your prayers.