From the rising of the sun to its going down
the Lord's name is to be praised!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Joy of the Peach

Here's a riddle for you all: What is the Joy of the Peach?

No it's not the naturally, delicious, sweet taste of biting into a summer peach. It's not even the delight of opening a can of preserved peaches. C'mon guys, my almost five year old figured this one out!!! (Before her mother I might add!)

Ok, it's a tough riddle. Here's the story behind it.

I was rallying myself for the day by singing 'This is the Day That the Lord has Made!' when the riddle spewed out of my three year olds mouth, in the form of a request.

Ksena: “Mom can you sing 'The Joy of the Peach?'”

Me: (slightly annoyed and on my way to the bathroom) “What? 'The Joy of the Peach'?”

Mia: “Oh, Mom she must mean 'The Fruit of the Spirit'”.

Yes indeed Mia, that is what she was requesting! Ksena wanted me to sing 'The Fruit of the Spirit' by Steve Green! I'm not sure I would have figured that one out on my own. I could have used some of those fruits in my heart this morning!
So, take your fill and learn to exercise these tasty fruits:


...Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.
Galations 6:22-26

Friday, December 05, 2008

Triple Wonder!
Congratulations Scott and Becky on the birth of your 3rd, 4th, and 5th child. May God's strength and grace surround you with the responsibility of these incredible blessings!

Brock James-2 days old

Abby Helena-2 days old
Mama Becky!!!! I am SO PROUD OF You!!!!!(and you to Scott!)

Myles Landon-2 days old and already captivated by his bestest Aunt Mel (OK, perhaps I'm letting my imagination run away with me...)

Are there words to describe these miracles?! Does "Praise God from Whom all blessing flow" capture it. How about:

For you formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are your WORKS, And that my soul knows very well.

Psalm 139:13-14

There are not enough words to describe the glory of our God revealed in His creation let alone in Salvation. What an AWESOME God He is!! It humbles me to know, that even our feeble attempt at praise gives, Him glory.

***Note: Photos taken by non other than the proud Daddy!***

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Just so ya know, I did not make the background of my header that awful color?! I've really gone squirrely!
Gone Squirrely

Let me tell you a squirrely tale. Now before you grab a coffee and settle in for a heartwarming story telling, let me warn you, this is actually something that may leave you feeling a little unsettled. So grab a blanket for security.

It all began one day when I was headed out the door with a load of wet laundry at my hip. I was making my way towards the big red porch steps, that led to our second level porch where the clothesline was situated. On my way, a squirrel raced ahead of me and stopped about five steps up. He looked me in the eyes as if to claim his territory. Naturally, I starred him down in order to claim what was rightfully mine. As the contest wore on, my nerves began to tingle. This squirrel was no ordinary squirrel...let's just say the laundry hanging was postponed until the backyard was free of squirrels.

The next squirrely episode began, when one Spring day, I noticed a squirrel in a hanging flower pot. I notified the head of the household and he took care of business. He stormed outside, grabbed the thief by it's tail, and gave a sound yank-throw all in one swift motion. My dear, gentle husband had not only saved my flowers, he had ripped off the squirrel's tail! The squirrel darted towards the neighbor's fence and again a starring contest ensued. This time we won.

There is one sad note to this second episode that I hesitate to tell. You see, when the tail of the squirrel ended up in my husbands hand, he gingerly threw it in the garden, glared a the squirrel (as his wife yelped beside him 'See!!!!! I told you they stare!!! I'm not crazy!!!'), and walked back into the house. The next day, the girls were playing outside and what should they find but a long, black furry thing. The questioning began, and what can a mother do but tell the truth?

Not only do the squirrels in our neighborhood claim territory that is not theirs, they confuse toys with nuts. Now I'm being gracious in this judgement; I am giving them the benefit of the doubt. It really could be that they are nasty at heart and simply want to ruin children's fun but I will assume for now that they are merely confused.

You see, the thing that makes me doubtful, is that a round, neon- orange-colored-ball looks nothing like your typical harvest nut. I have pictures of this confused squirrel and you can take your pick as to whether or not the squirrels are confused or mean spirited.

(Cast your vote at the 'Squirrely Poll' on the top, right hand corner of my blog!)
**Squirrely Poll has ended-THANK YOU for participating!
Just the other day, I thought I heard a knocking at the door or a tapping on my window. I walked towards the door and there sat a squirrel on my window sill. He was taunting me, I'm sure. There were no nuts in his hands to crack so the noise could only have been meant to disturb my supper making process.

My oldest daughter instructs her sister well when she says "Sen, you can't go out there! See that squirrel-he will eat you!" Very wise Mia! Or is this fear mongering?

To say the least, we have all gone squirrely!
Remembrance Day
My kids are too young to attend a service for Remembrance Day but they are not too young to color. Here is some work they did this morning for homeschooling.

Mia's Work
Ksena's Work
Here is the link for the coloring page printout: Remembrance Day

Monday, November 03, 2008

"Not Me!" Monday

Here goes the Mckmamma Monday post...

I was not impressed with my husband for posting the following message on the fridge:

I would much prefer to prepare a meal on my own! This is downright insulting! I simply do not enjoy buying pizza for supper! No, not me.

I did not consume five, 1.89L bottles of cranberry juice since last Tuesday. That would be a ridiculous amount of juice! I also do not have a need to drink this beverage as it does not help flush out certain infections in one's body.

I do not request my husband to straighten our bedsheets nightly. I dutifully remake our bed every morning as my marriage contract requires. My husband does not remind me of this contract regularly, as we banter about who should be making the bed. I never tell him that since he refuses to sleep with the sheets tucked into the end of the bed, that the mess is due to his sleeping habits. I don't insist that if the sheets were tucked in, that the bed would not need to be remade daily. We do not enjoy this friendly argument. Not us!

I did not pick up a wet, size 2T underwear, out of my folded clean laundry this afternoon. Since that did not happen, I did not recall instructing sweet Ksena to put her 'brukie' in the laundry after she had an accident- and evidently she did not obey me with perfection.

I was not delighted when Joel and Lynette pulled into our driveway on Sunday morning. I did not get excited and anticipate what they must have come to tell us. I am not excited that they are engaged and I definitely would have preferred that Lynette keep her vow to marry when she was 40.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

October Snow

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Hope Does Not Disappoint

I was reflecting this morning on the funeral for the little girl that Belinda spoke about in her last 'Micah Update'. Rylee was only 21 months old. My sweet little is Esmé 20 months old! I kissed her cheeks with fervor as she struggled in my arms and her little life felt so precious to me.

I read Psalm 139 and found comfort in God's perfect knowledge of us.

Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
And in Your book they all were written,
The days fashioned for me,
When as yet there were none of them.

How precious are Your thoughts to me, O God!
How great is the sum of them!
If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand;
When I awake, I am still with You.
Psalm 139: 16-18

Those words are music to my soul!

My thoughts are also on Belinda as she sees the pain of so many parent's in this battle of cancer. It hurts us to imagine that kind of pain, but she's in it. God is going before her and there is power in that (to say the least!). Remember all the battles God fought for Israel? He always reminded His warriors that it was His battle and would only be won in His strength. He not only leads His troops, He fights the battle for them. What a mighty God we serve!

And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations(sufferings), knowing that tribulation produces, perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Romans 5:3-5

And so I pray. I pray that God gives grace to Rylee's parents and reveals to them that He is Good- that His love is better than life! And I pray that God's grace surrounds Belinda as she witnesses and endures suffering. Our God is big and I will not doubt His power.

There is a song that is speaking to me.

"Jesus Draw Me Ever Nearer"
Music by Keith Getty;
Words by Margaret BeckerCopyright © 2002 Thankyou Music

Jesus draw me ever nearer
As I labour through the storm.
You have called me to this passage,
and I'll follow, though I'm worn.

May this journey bring a blessing,
May I rise on wings of faith;
And at the end of my heart's testing,
With Your likeness let me wake.

Jesus guide me through the tempest;
Keep my spirit staid and sure.
When the midnight meets the morning,
Let me love You even more.

Let the treasures of the trial
Form within me as I go -
And at the end of this long passage,
Let me leave them at Your throne.

Here's the link to hear it (and more) on MySpace: Keith and Krystyn Getty

Hoping- because 'He is mine and I am His'!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Not Me! Monday
My sister has been writing 'Not Me! Monday' posts and I thought it was kinda fun. I'd like to try it too, so here goes! Just to be clear, the idea behind this is COMPLETE sarcasm.

I would NEVER, and I mean never leave my last load of laundry in the dryer to veg for an entire week. In fact, I always have all of my laundry washed, dried, folded and put away in one day. What is the point of doing the work and then living out of laundry baskets!?

I would never get my children's passport photos done in grubby cloths and especially not in wet ones. If my youngest spilled water on her shirt before we left the house to get the pics done, I would most definitely change her shirt.

I do not look forward to putting my children to bed. I miss them dreadfully when they are sleeping and spend most of my evenings peeking into their bedrooms. I simply cannot concentrate on a book, or a hobby while they are down for the night.

I would never go to church without freshly washed hair. People would certainly notice and be thoroughly disgusted. I simply would not be able to wait until Monday morning to shampoo it.

I would never sit down to read a book while there is piles of laundry to fold, or blog with the laundry on the back of my mind!

I would never put my kids to bed in a T-shirt that they had worn all day. And if for some insane reason I overlooked it, they would definitely not be wearing that same shirt the next day!

No...not me!

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Wilayna's New Friend

Just thought I'd post this sweet picture of my little cousin Wilayna. Pretty neat eh! She made the front page of the Brantford Expositor-check it out.

Family Pics 2008
We had our family pictures done in September by Lisa Pennings. It sure was time! The last good family picture we had, I was pregnant with Esmé. We had these taken at the old train station behind our house-behind Giant Tiger and VanPelt's.

Mia(almost 5)
Ksena (3 years old)
Esmé (19 months)
Just imagine when they are teenagers...

Friday, August 29, 2008


  • She is the one I can call when I'm having a bad day.
  • She 'gets it' when I'm frazzled from motherhood.
  • She listens to the mundane details of my life patiently.
  • She had me wrapped around her finger when we were growing up (just ask her!).
  • We are as different as night and day but don't those two things go so well together?!
  • I didn't realize that I was still a little sister but today I still need my big sister.
As much as it hurts to have her gone it's nice to know how much I miss her. She is a special gift from God and I couldn't have picked her better myself! So in the heartache of not living in the same old town of St. Thomas together, I will thank my God that we can function in two separate places in His strength. I will thank Him for allowing me the profoundness of loving someone so much.

There are things in life that God gives us to enjoy and one of them is sisterhood. Thank you Heavenly Father for my sweet, sweet sister Taun! I am praying that we will both bloom where we are planted because that is every one's calling. I will be thankful for the other 6 sisters I have (and the one dear brother). My heart is also praising God for the MANY sweet sisters in Christ that are gracing my life.

Some pairs come to mind from Scripture:

Ruth and Naomi
Mary and Elizabeth
Mary and Martha

I'm sure there are more. God put those pairs together and look how they functioned with each other! Ruth and Naomi returned to the promised land together. Mary and Elizabeth shared the bond of motherhood and miraculous conceptions at that! Mary and Martha served Jesus together in their own special ways.

There is a sweetness in functioning together and it is a tender and precious gift straight from the hand of our Heavenly Father!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Just an Ordinary Day

A short list of happenings:

  • Ksena broke her hip at the park-actually she just scraped her back but she’s pretty sure her ‘hip is broked’. (Thanks Dani D for letting her cuddle you for comfort.)

  • Esmé did about a weeks worth of ‘you know what’ in her diaper at the park and since I am not insanely organized, she was bare legged for most of ‘Park Day’.

  • Mia skinned her knee at the park.

  • Esmé went through three outfits; Ksena went through two pairs of shorts.

  • Ksena’s shorts fell off while we were going for a walk. Ksena’s shorts fell off while she was playing outside and ended up drenched in water.

  • Esmé tried to get out of the grocery cart while I was unloading the groceries into the van. Normally I would secure her in her car seat before I do this but I had forgotten to purchase the roasted chicken from the ‘Hot Deli’ so we had to go back into the store. ( I’m not sure why I forgot the chicken)

  • Ksena tried to get herself out of the grocery cart while I was buckling Esmé into her car seat.

You’ll notice there are not many tragedies written about Mia which gives me hope. Apparently by about four years old children are somewhat civilized! :O) In fact they are even helpful. Mia loaded all of our necessities into the van for park day, took some things back into the house when we returned from the park and helped load and unload the groceries. For this I am very thankful. I am also very thankful that God helped me see the humour in a lot of situations that typically overwhelm me.

Now on to tomorrow, and remembering to love them and expecting them to be children…because God loves me unfailingly and showers me with His grace when I sin as His child.

Psalm 103:13-14
13Just as a father has compassion on his children,
So the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him.
14For He Himself knows our frame;
He is mindful that we are but dust.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

How Morgentaler Qualifies for the Order of Canada

Excerpt from the Govenor General of Canada webpage:

The Order of Canada is the centrepiece of Canada’s honours system and recognizes a lifetime of outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation. The Order recognizes people in all sectors of Canadian society. Their contributions are varied, yet they have all enriched the lives of others and made a difference to this country. The Order of Canada’s motto is DESIDERANTES MELIOREM PATRIAM (They desire a better country).

Ok, so if this doesn’t clearly explain to you how Morgentaler qualifies, let me break it down for you.

Outstanding Achievement:

There are 6 provinces in Canada with Morgentaler Clinics, He has performed at least 7000 abortions himself, and He was successful in decriminalizing abortion in 1988.

Dedication to the community:
He has been jailed, threatened, endangered, and had a bombing at one of his clinics. Yet he perseveres in ensuring ‘increased health care options for women’. Now that is dedication-but what about the community part? This procedure seems to eliminate community based on this Q&A (from the
Morgentaler Clinic Toronto webpage.) while being very dedicated to ensuring the death of future members of our community.

Do I need a doctor’s referral to book an appointment? No, you do not need a doctor’s referral to make an appointment. You can make the appointment at your convenience and at your request. Do I need my parent’s or my partner’s permission? No, you do not need parental and partner permission to book an appointment or to have an abortion. Is there a waiting period before I can have my procedure? No, in Canada abortion is available upon request. There are no regulatory waiting times in place to prevent or restrict access to abortion services.

Service to the Nation:

The outcome of the January 1988 Regina vs Morgentaler. (Thank you to Andrew Coyne of MacLean’s magazine for educating me on this part of Canadian history!) Morgentaler opened the doors wide for confusion regarding our lack of laws surrounding abortion. He did such a good job that most Canadians don’t even realize there are no laws regarding abortion!

Enriched the Lives of Others:

Need I go on? I think you all can fill in the blanks at this point. The motto speaks for itself too. “They desire a better country”. I’m just confused as to who it is that desires a better country. The committee who gives the awards, the people of Canada, or the recipients of the awards?

It’s a scary thing when a nation rewards evil isn’t it? How sad that a man who has caused pain and grief in so many lives is extolled. And what about the millions of lives lost on account of our ‘increased health care options’? It makes me feel helpless that such a perverse man is being honoured.

This feeling reminds me of the Psalms that speak of evil prospering but in the end God is the judge. The Psalmist often reminds us that God sees what man is doing and He will destroy evil. In essence the wicked do not prevail even when they appear to. Psalm 52 compares people who love evil with people who love righteousness. Their ends are very different. The wicked will perish and the righteous will live forever in Glory because of God’s amazing grace!

PLEASE sign this petition! Petition Link

Psalm 1:6
For the Lord knows the way of the righteous,
But the way of the ungodly shall perish.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Oh, That Preachy Mamma!

Just a warning that when you give your kiddos words of wisdom from the Scripture, be sure to give the text reference! Why is this important? If you do not give the reference, your children may assume that every thing you speak is Biblical.

For example, a few months ago Ksena had fallen in the kitchen. As is typical for her, she flopped right out and found it impossible to peal herself up off the floor. In exasperation I said “Ksena, when you fall, get up!”

WOW! Stunning revelation and words that should stick with a child for a lifetime don’t you think? Apparently Mia thought so, and said “Mommy, that’s a funny text. I should remember that one!”

Friday, July 04, 2008

Lyrics: Bring the Rain
By MercyMe

I can count a million times
People asking me how I
Can praise You with all that I've gone through

The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly
Change who I forever am in You

Maybe since my life was changed
Long before these rainy days
It's never really ever crossed my mind

To turn my back on you, oh Lord
My only shelter from the storm
But instead I draw closer through these times

So I pray
Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free
Bring me anything that brings You glory
And I know there'll be days
When this life brings me pain
But if that's what it takes to praise You
Jesus, bring the rain!

I am yours regardless of
The clouds that may loom above
Because you are much greater than my pain

You who made a way for me
Suffering your destiny
So tell me whats a little rain

To hear the song on You Tube: Bring the Rain

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Skipping the College Stage

Way before I became a mother, and before I worked at Word & Deed, I worked at Empire Valley Farms. When I think back on those days my eyes twinkle and a smile crosses my face. Those were days spent with my dear friend Becky who later became my sister-in-law. We worked long hours in the packing barn sorting cucumbers, tomatoes, and green peppers.

I was brought back to those days filled with hard work and laughter this weekend as I past the tomatoes in the vegetable aisle. The earthy, tangy smell reached out to me and pulled memories to mind about the chatter between two teenage girls dreaming of what lay ahead.

As we worked Becky made sure we enjoyed what we were doing. I used to stare at her in amazement as she would pull a tomato off the belt that moved the fruit we were sorting, and take a BIG juicy bite. It looked SO delicious but there was no way I could eat a tomato without something to go with it. The peppers on the other hand appealed to me. I tried to work up the nerve to take a bite of a jumbo, crisp green Bell pepper but to no avail. Who eats peppers like an apple?! People would surely think I’m weird and what if the boss saw me! So all the peppers went in the boxes as Becky rolled her eyes at me for being so…who knows what?!

Neither of us had any solid plans for the future and when asked if we’d be going to college in the Fall we would giggle and say that we were skipping the college stage and going straight to the barn. Why waste money on an education when people end up being labourers with a degree anyway we thought. Short sighted I know.

Eventually Becky did go to college and earned her PSW degree (Personal Support Worker) and it serves her well. I applied to Westervelt College and was accepted but in the mean time was hired by
Word & Deed Ministries. The job took priority and I never did get a degree. Now I realise that an education is never wasted but there are many ways to be educated. I learned a lot in the work environment and am learning even more now that I am a mother. I do look forward to the possibility of going to college someday when the kiddos are all grown up, but for now they are my teachers.

So here’s to Becky, and the tomatoes for the fond memories and the great education! :O)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Worry, Suffering and our Saviour who Wept

Have you ever feared to suffer? I know I have. Have you ever thought that worrying enough might just prevent bad things from happening? Foolish, I know. In reality worry can not prevent suffering and in fact it is sin. God is in control and we deny this when we worry. Matthew shows how futile it is by questioning “Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?”(6:31) In the Geneva study Bible the explanation on this verse informs us that the Greek word for stature can also be translated “life span”. So in other words, worrying will not extend our life in any way and in fact medical science proves that it can actually have adverse affects on our health! Go figure.

There is actually great relief in the instruction not to worry. After all, the burden of our future is not on us. We are to “seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness,” (Matt 6:33a). Do you see the implication of this instruction?! It is incredibly beautiful. It leaves no reason for worry. When one is saved and made perfect by Jesus’ blood what on earth do we have to worry about?!

Matthew goes on to say, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” (6:34) Our worries will not prevent or change how tomorrow will be, so leave it to God. He is big enough to get us through any suffering that life holds. His grace is sufficient.

Not only do we serve a God that is big enough, we serve a Saviour who knows pain. I have a friend who, when I unload about life’s frustrations, often says in a very compassionate voice “I get it”. It helps to know that we are not alone-that someone else has lived the same kind of pain. Well, Jesus ‘gets it’. When Jesus saw Mary and the people who were with her weeping because Lazarus had died, ‘He groaned in the spirit and was troubled’ (John 11:33) When the people were about to show Him where Lazarus was buried, ‘Jesus Wept' (John 11:35). Let the truth of Jesus suffering penetrate your heart and give you comfort in knowing that you are not alone. Jesus ‘gets it’.

Here's a link to a blog that displays the power and strength that God supplies in the darkest of valleys. You can click to the beginning of the story at the top left corner of the blog.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Welcome Little Olivia!! :O)
Hi all. In case you're wondering why I haven't posted any pictures of our beautiful niece Olivia Maria VanDyk (LOVE her name!) it's because I can't get them off of our camera! :O( We went to see her about a week ago and she is so sweet! Val has posted some pictures of her and so has Carole.
Congratulations Erik and Rachel!
"Praise God from whom all blessings flow!"

Monday, March 10, 2008

Catching Up, Misc, Winter Blahs, Etc...

It's been a while since my last post. Are all you other mother's hearing the pleas from your littles to go for walks, go to the park etc? Spring can't come soon enough around here! It's actually pretty neat to hear how much Mia remembers from last Spring/Summer.

Here's some miscellaneous pictures beginning with the most recent and ending with tobogganing on Esmé's birthday.

Hoping for Spring...the first sprouts.

Our Winter Garden

Family Day...The girls hassled Dan all day while I giggled and read my book. Needless to say Dan didn't get much done.

The Problem Solver...when the sun is shining on the computer screen and Mom doesn't have the capacity to hang a curtain (I TRIED!) then Mia's problem solving skills kick in.
Jam Face

Mia is the best helper! This picture is taken during 'happy hour' when supper is being made, Daddy's on his way home and Esmé can't wait to eat.

Esmé's Birthday Party

Tobogganing at the old Faith Baptist hill.
Ksena is mourning the brevity of Winter. ;O)
Tea Time! (with honey of course!)

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Esmé's First Year
Check out the link below for a slideshow of Esmé's first year!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Snow Buddies!

We went to A. Taun's this morning so that the kids could play together in the snow (not so the mom's could drink coffee!).

Can you tell Tiana enjoys winter almost as much as summer? ;O)

Guess who came in first? Little Sen of course...followed closely by Tiana.

Ksena got 'stuck' here and was terrified. Big cousin Caleb had to hold her hand and bring her away from the gigantic slippery hill. What a hero!